Bedford Borough Council’s annual Foster Carer Awards returned last week, following a two-year break, to celebrate the borough’s fosters carers and say ‘Thank You’ for all that they do to support the children and young people in their care.
The annual awards, which had to be celebrated online during the pandemic, was held in person for the first time since 2019, at Renhold Village Hall.
Categories for awards, nominated by foster carers, social workers, support staff and the children and young people cared for, and assessed by a judging panel include:
- Team Award - For a carer / household who has shown outstanding contribution to developing the fostering service; of other carers; and looked after young people
- Horizon Award - For a carer / household who have shown outstanding ambition, aspiration and commitment to their development to provide quality care for you people
- Voice Award - For a carer / household who has gone the extra mile in advocating for young people and has helped their voice to be heard
- Rock Award - For a carer / household who has shown outstanding resilience and commitment in supporting other carers and young people
Length of service awards were also given to carers who have been fostering with Bedford Borough Council for 10, 15, 20 and 30 years of service.
The stars of this year’s celebration were Brian and Maureen, and Heather and Keith who received their 30-year milestone awards from Mayor Dave Hodgson and Martin Purbrick, Director of Children’s Services.
Heather and Keith said, “Our journey as Foster Carers for the last 30+ years has been a life-changing experience. Often very challenging but also incredibly rewarding
“We have worked with some amazing children and families and have been able to share their lives as they start to look forward to a brighter future
“It has been a privilege that so many of our young people and families continue to choose to include us in their lives.”
Cllr James Valentine, portfolio holder for Children’s Services and Education said, “I am delighted we are able to recognise our wonderful foster carers in person this year. They all do a fantastic job in ensuring children and young people are loved and cared for. Their dedication is inspiring and it’s an honour to celebrate with them all.
“We have heard some amazing stories through the celebration. Congratulations, well done and thank you to all our foster carers.”
To find out more about fostering for Bedford Borough Council visit www.bedford.gov.uk/fostering