Another milestone has been reached for the Foster Care Refresh project with the launch of a Statement of Commitment to Foster and Family Carers during last week’s National Child Protection Week 2022.
The Foster Care Refresh project is a joint collaboration between the Department of Communities (Communities), the Foster Care Association of WA, the Commissioner of Children and Young People, and the Child and Family Alliance WA to better understand the lived experience of carers and the support they need.
During consultations foster carers delivered a number of suggestions of how Communities could improve the foster care experience.
These included: better communication; a consistent approach to case management; a more responsive and inclusive system in terms of planning and decision making; greater access to in-home support for children with complex needs; and better access to health and educational services.
One of the actions to come out of that feedback was the development of a Statement of Commitment to foster and family carers.
The document outlines how Communities can support effective partnerships with carers and was a collaboration between Communities, Foster Care Association of WA and the Child and Family Alliance. The Statement acknowledges that carers should be valued, respected, informed, supported and consulted.
It also outlines the roles and responsibilities of the major stakeholders; foster and family carers; Communities; out-of-home-care funded services; Foster Care Association and the Child and Family Allowance.
Building strong partnerships with foster and family carers will ultimately lead to improved outcomes for children in care.