Could you offer respite care to some of Northamptonshire’s 700 children in care?

Five Rivers Care Service is searching for respite-break foster carers to look after children on a short term basis.
Five Rivers Care Service is searching for respite-break foster carers to look after children on a short term basis.

A child care service is calling on experienced care givers to offer up their skills and time to provide respite to foster carers in Northamptonshire.

Five Rivers Child Care says there are currently 700 children in foster care in the county - but their carers could benefit from a respite break too.

Respite carers take in a foster child for a limited time period when things like family emergencies, pre-planned holidays and work commitments crop up.

Respite carers provide vital support to long-term foster carers who might not otherwise have a break from their full-time role as a foster carer.

This January, Five Rivers Child Care is asking anyone with caregiving experience and the relevant transferable skills to consider applying to be respite or short-term foster carers.

In some instances, a respite carer might look after a child for an overnight stay, a weekend, or even just after school if the foster carer is unable to get home in time.

Martin Leitch, head of fostering operations for Five Rivers Child Care, said: “Respite carers are an integral part of the fostering industry and ensure full-time foster carers can retain flexibility in their personal lives. Like everyone else, foster carers often find January a busy time so it can be a time when we require more respite carers than usual.

“This type of care is a perfect employment opportunity for those with the relevant caregiving skills and would be great for someone in an existing part-time care role looking for a flexible work opportunity. The roles also offer regular training with industry experts and the opportunity to work alongside social workers and other healthcare professionals.”

People from all walks of life can become respite carers as long as they are over 21 years of age, including single people, co-habiting couples, same sex couples and people living in rented accommodation. The only requirement is a spare room for each foster child.

For more information about respite fostering contact Five Rivers Child Care on 0345 266 0272 or visit their website.