Growing up in a safe home environment has a profound effect on how we end up as a society. It is an unfortunate fact that children and young people living in rural and regional Victoria are over-represented in the child protection system.
With 42 percent of children now in foster care living in inner or outer regional areas, and children in remote and very remote areas combined being twice as likely to be in care as those in major cities, there is an urgent need for more foster carers in these areas.
Within the Hume region, Berry Street currently has 39 foster carers who provide different types of care for 47 children, from short term to long term and respite care. But the organisations need more people to step up on this rewarding journey.
“We are always looking for the right people to help us care for children who can’t live safely at home. Anyone over 21 can be a foster carer, as long as they have a spare room for a child,” said Sharelle Davidson, a senior manager at Berry Street, Shepparton.
“People with experience working with children or in community services, such as teachers, disability workers and aged care workers, make excellent carers, as do many others,” said Sharelle.
If you or someone you know wants to be a foster carer, you can call the Hume region’s office on 03 5822 8100 or enquire through the Berry Street website: https://www.berrystreet.org.au/foster-and-kinship-care/enquire.