We took our message to all the main UK-wide political parties, meeting with Conservative MP and children’s minister Edward Timpson, as well as Prime Minister David Cameron’s policy advisor, Steve McCabe MP - Labour’s shadow children’s minister, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg’s special advisor, and representatives from the Green Party.
The Green Party said on page 28 of their manifesto: "do more for young people who have no family; a basic first step would be to pay foster carers a salary, costing about £0.9 billion a year."
The Liberal Democrats said on page 61 of their manifesto: “Tackle delay and instability in foster care, with better support and training for foster carers, including on mental health issues”
Vicki Swain, campaigns manager at The Fostering Network, said: “We are heartened that fostering has found a place in these two party manifestos. They set out a vision for the future and show where priorities lie. Foster carers provide children with stability, security, attachment, and often their first positive experience of family life, so a commitment to fostering is a commitment to supporting the vast majority of children in care, and the foster carers who devote their lives to giving them loving and supportive homes for as long as they need them.
“Fostering often provides a permanent home and family for a child so that they can live a settled life, develop as individuals, gain an education, and flourish as a contributing member of society when they reach independence.”
The Fostering Network has also published our own manifesto for the future of fostering. We would encourage you to familiarise yourself with it so that if any parliamentary candidates come to your home, you can discuss with them exactly what fostering means to you and the changes that could make fostering even better for all involved.