'Children's lives can be changed because of the foster family in which they live'

National development manager – social care, Children’s Workforce Development Council (CWDC)

The most important relationship a child or young person is likely to have is with the people who care for them – and for some that will mean their foster carers. This is a key relationship and it is vital to make sure it is strong and supportive of the child's needs.

Foster carers make an invaluable contribution to our society. Their skills and expertise can make a fundamental difference to a child or young person, and children's lives can change because of the safe, caring and supportive foster family in which they live.

Carers come from varied backgrounds but they all share a common interest in wanting to work with children, to help children and feel they have something to offer. If foster carers are to continue to make a positive difference, they need access to the right kind of learning and support.

Children's Workforce Development Council (CWDC) is committed to making sure that all those who work with children and young people have the right skills and knowledge, training and support needed to do their job.

That is why CWDC launched the Training, Support and Development (TSD) Standards for Foster Care in 2007.

The TSD standards are designed to ensure that there is consistency in what foster carers understand their role to be and the skills they need. All approved foster carers are expected to reach the TSD benchmark by 2011.

This year CWDC held a series of events to hear directly from foster carers and service providers so that CWDC could understand what still needs to be done to meet the 2011 deadline. The events highlighted the strong commitment of foster care agencies and of foster carers to the standards.

Agencies were keen to share a wealth of examples of good practice and discussed what additional support was needed.

As a result of the feedback, CWDC is developing support materials inviting agencies to offer their own case material and examples; this will be published later in the year.

CWDC has worked closely with the Fostering Network and has sponsored the development of materials on peer mentoring for foster carers and a DVD and other training materials focusing on innovative learning techniques around the standards.

It became clear when the Government launched the Aiming High for Disabled Children programme that we needed to consider the position of carers who offer short-break placements for children with complex health and behavioural needs. So we have worked with our colleagues who provide short breaks to adapt the original TSD standards to reflect the distinct role of the short-break carer in providing short periods of care. These will be launched in June.

In addition, agencies can now access funding through CWDC's Increasing Skills in Social Care fund to support foster carers undertaking an NVQ Level 3 in Health and Social Care.

From May 2009, there will be funding to all agencies where foster carers are not pursuing an NVQ.

CWDC will continue to allow stakeholders to share their views on how we support foster carers and their provider agencies. This is especially important as we begin to explore what additional skills and knowledge may be appropriate for foster carers.

Our work on the TSD standards will help to inform the next stages in social care professional development and ensure foster carers feel fully included as members of the social-care workforce.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Stiller as Derek Zoolander in the leaked trailer for Zoolander 2
film
Sport
footballArsenal take the Community Shield thanks to a sensational strike from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Arts and Entertainment
Gemma Chan as synth Anita in Humans
film
News
Keeping it friendly: Tom Cruise on ‘The Daily Show’ with Jon Stewart
people
Arts and Entertainment
Ensemble cast: Jamie McCartney with ‘The Great Wall of Vagina’
artBritish artist Jamie McCartney explains a work that is designed to put women's minds at rest
News
Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Student

AER Teachers: Graduate Primary Teaching Assistant

£65 - £75 per day + competitive rates: AER Teachers: A good primary school in ...

AER Teachers: Graduate Secondary Teaching Assistant

£65 - £75 per day + competitive rates: AER Teachers: A good and improving scho...

Recruitment Genius: Graduate Software Developer - Entry Level

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Graduate Software Developer i...

Guru Careers: Graduate Print Producer / Account Executive

£18 - 25k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Graduate Print Producer / Account Execut...

SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

The haunting of Shirley Jackson

Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen