FosterTalk Awards 2015
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Nine incredible foster carers and one 12 year old girl were recognised at the FosterTalk Foster Carer Awards held in London on 28 October. The ten winners were presented with their award by acclaimed poet Lemn Sissay MBE, who has experienced being in care himself, along with comedian, writer and adoptee Rhona Cameron.
You can watch our awards video here:
During the awards, we had a special message from Children’s and Family Minister Edward Timpson who congratulated the foster carers and Fosterline which is delivered by FosterTalk on behalf of the Department for Education. You can watch the video of this special message here:
FosterTalk received an overwhelming number of nominations from across the UK and the winners themselves had received nominations from their family and friends, social workers as well as from the foster children themselves.
Melody Douglas, managing director of FosterTalk said: “All foster carers deserve to be recognised for the work that they do, we had hundreds of entries which made it very hard for our judges to select winners but we will ensure that certificates of recognition are sent to all those foster carers who were nominated. After all, these awards are to celebrate all foster carers not just the winners and we hope it inspires other people to consider becoming foster carers.”
The ten winners were:
★ Long service award – Helen and Eddie Brown
Long Service Award winners Helen and Eddie Brown from Liverpool, who are foster carers with Sefton Council. Helen and Eddie were nominated for their dedication to fostering for 50 years and the enormous difference they have made to more than 60 children in their care during that time,
★ Young person’s foster carer award – Savannah Davis
Young Person’s Foster Carer Award was won by 12 year old Savannah Davis who was nominated by her adoptive mum Sally Robinson who has been a foster carer for Leicester City Council for over five years. During Sally’s fostering career, Savannah, from the age of six, has helped her mum care for 20 children who have all been under the age of four.
★ Permanency carers award – Teresa and Peter Carpenter
The Permanency Carer Award winners were Teresa and Peter Carpenter from Kent who are foster carers with Kent County Council, currently have three youngsters placed permanently with them, and it was their 17 year old foster son Nathan Carpenter who nominated them for this award. Nathan and his sister Olivia have lived with Teresa and Peter for the last seven years.
★ Outstanding contribution to fostering – Maxine Palmer-Hunter and Dan Gilbert Hunter
Outstanding contribution to fostering winners were Maxine Palmer-Hunter and Dan Gilbert from Birmingham, who have been fostering for nine years focusing on helping young people with challenging behaviour aged between 13 and 18. They are foster carers with Fostering Dimensions, were nominated by their 14 year old foster daughter Eden Godfrey, who has only been in their care for five months.
★ Outstanding commitment to foster children with disabilities – Helen Briggs
Outstanding commitment to foster children with disabilities winner Helen Briggs from Hampshire, who is a foster carer with Fostering Solutions, was nominated by her supervising social worker Carla Grant for her commitment to providing children with disabilities the best possible opportunities for their development. Helen currently cares for three children aged under eight with disabilities and learning difficulties. Three years ago, Helen chose to care for an 18 month old baby boy who suffers from Townes-Brock Syndrome. This little boy had spent most of his life in a hospital bed with kidney failure and had no attachment to a foster carer; he is currently waiting for a kidney transplant.
★ Foster carers of distinction – Alan Wood and Rolfe Pearce
Foster Carer’s of Distinction Award was won by Alan Wood and Rolfe Pearce from Stafford who are foster carers with Foster Care Associates (FCA), have been fostering for seven years and were nominated by their supervising social worker Marina Morgani. They became foster carers when Rolfe gave up his corporate job in order to give something back to the community. He became a full-time foster carer with Alan as a secondary foster carer.
★ Respite/short break foster carer award – Waheeda Waheed
Respite/short break foster carer award winner Waheeda Waheed, she has been a foster carer for eight years, offering respite for parents with children with additional needs. Waheeda currently cares for three children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder on different days of the week as well as fitting in a part time job. Waheeda is a foster carer with Slough Children’s Services Trust and was nominated by a fellow foster carer Mandy Foley
★ Kinship carer award – Noel Henry
Kinship carer award – Noel Henry from Leyton who is a ‘Family and Friends’ foster carer with London Borough of Newham, was nominated by her supervising social worker Anita Howard for her unwavering commitment to her six grandchildren.Noel has been caring for her grandchildren for the last two years. Prior to this, the children aged between six and 15 were all in separate placements. Noel and her family worked hard together and applied to become the children’s carer in order for them to be reunited.
★ New foster carers award – Tony Maglio and Dorrett Smith
New foster carers award winners were Tony Maglio and Dorrett Smith from East London who have been fostering for two years with Kindercare Fostering, a member of the NFA Group, were nominated by their supervising social worker Ioana Cristea.
★ Teenage foster carer award – Peter Prowse
Teenage foster carer award winner was Peter Prowse from Devon, he is a foster carer with Torbay Council and started fostering over seven years ago with his ex-wife who was the main carer. Although Peter doesn’t have any children of his own, he found that he had a real skill for fostering, especially difficult and challenging placements with attachment issues. Despite the break-up of his marriage, Peter decided to continue fostering alone and currently cares for two youngsters who nominated him for this award.