ON Thursday evening 20 May, Aberystwyth town library at Canolfan Alun R Edwards will light up in orange to mark Foster Care Fortnight. Also shining a light on the work of Ceredigion’s foster carers is Welsh artist Nathan Wyburn.
Nathan, who is known for his unique methods of creating art, has produced a piece using LED lights to illustrate how any house can become a safe and loving home.
Foster Care Fortnight, a national awareness-raising and recruitment campaign run by The Fostering Network is between 10 and 23 May this year. With this year’s theme being ‘#WhyWeCare’, we’re calling on more people to consider fostering.
While many of us have had family and friends there to support us during difficult times faced over the last year, many children and young people across Wales need that support more than ever before.
Finding inspiration from a poem on foster carers, Nathan Wyburn reflected on his art piece: “I wanted to create something that champions foster carers in the way they open the doors to their homes – and their hearts. I chose to turn those words into art with a piece that signifies a home being the literal light at the end of the tunnel for children and young people. I think one of the biggest myths around fostering is that you have to have a big house with a big garden to be a foster carer – and that’s just not true.”
A video showing a time-lapse of the piece coming together and overlaid with said poem can be viewed from the following link: https://fb.watch/5sRdfgnRP3/
You too can show your support for Foster Care Fortnight by placing a lamp in your front window on Thursday evening, 20 May to ‘shine a light’ on the work being done by Ceredigion County Council’s foster carers, and celebrate their efforts in transforming children and young people’s lives.
Councillor Catherine Hughes, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Porth Gofal, Early Intervention, Wellbeing Hubs and Culture said: “Foster carers provide day-to-day support, love and stability to children and young people who can’t live with their birth families. While many of us may have been unhappy about spending the best part of the last year cooped up at home, for some young people they can only dream of having the sense of safety, security and comfort that home has provided us with. It’s quite simply something that can seem out of reach to some children and young people.”
Hundreds of new foster families are needed every year in Wales to care for children of all ages, and in particular for sibling groups, older children and young people, children with additional needs, and unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.
Councillor Hughes added: “There are many misconceptions surrounding fostering. For example, some people think you have to be in a relationship or married – or own your own home – and that’s simply not true. One of the things about fostering is that it’s not about changing a child, it’s about letting them be themselves and helping them discover who they are so they can flourish. So, we welcome applications from people who can bring a wide range of life and work experiences with them to the role.”
If you think you could make a difference by becoming a foster carer, visit our website for further information, www.ceredigion.gov.uk/resident/social-care-wellbeing/interested-in-adoption-fostering-short-breaks/fostering/