Council appeals for local families to foster teenagers like Freddie
There is a shortage of long-term foster homes for teenagers in Gloucestershire.
The lack of long-term homes means that some teenagers experience many changes. They have to move home more often, which means they are unable to feel settled and secure.
Freddie*, who is 14 years old, came into care because his parents’ substance misuse and domestic violence meant they could not take care of him and he wasn’t safe at home.
He has experienced so much change in his life, never really having anywhere to call his own or belong. He has lived with a number of foster families and spent some time in residential units.
Freddie’s social worker at Gloucestershire County Council, Lucy, said: “Freddie is a quiet and sensitive boy. He often has his hood up and can be anxious when meeting new people. However, once you get to know him he quickly comes out of his shell and enjoys having a laugh and a joke. He has a fun and cheeky personality and loves Xbox.”
Freddie is interested in agricultural and animal care and would like to continue learning more about these in the future. He also enjoys other outdoor activities.
Freddie said: “I love animals and would be happy to live in a home with pets. I would like to live in a family environment where I can be comfortable.”
Freddie has experienced a lot of trauma and adversity in his childhood and needs to be supported to repair the impact that this has had on him. He has missed some schooling and because of his experiences he can struggle to manage his emotions.
He needs long-term foster carers who are patient and understanding to help him feel safe. They would need to be able to offer him a regular routine and unconditional care. His foster carers would help him celebrate his achievements, develop his interests and support him to continue to have a relationship with his older brother.
Cllr Richard Boyles, cabinet member for children’s safeguarding and early years at Gloucestershire County Council said: “We want children to enjoy the stability of a caring long term foster home so that they can feel secure.
“Fostering is extremely rewarding and the financial cost of providing teenagers with the care, clothing, spending money and other needs, are all covered. Please get in touch if you think you can offer a caring long term home to a teenager like Freddie, our team would love to chat to you.”
To foster, people need to be aged 21 or over and have a spare bedroom. Find out more by visiting www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/fostering or call 01242 532654.