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Foster care wins watchdog praise
FOSTERING services in Hampshire are “good with outstanding features”, according to Ofsted watchdogs.
Hampshire County Council currently has more than 600 children placed with more than 500 carers around the county.
The latest inspection report highlights the nurturing, stable, safe, family environments provided by foster carers in Hampshire, and the extensive training and support given to foster carers by staff from the county council’s fostering service.
Inspectors said the service is led by experienced and knowledgeable managers, and that children and young people in foster care live in a healthy environment.
They also found children and young people are well-supported to pursue a variety of interests and develop their confidence.
Another area highlighted for praise was the service’s support for young people moving from care to more independent living and young adulthood.
But Ofsted also identified areas where the service could be further enhanced, including ensuring children are encouraged to keep appropriate memorabilia of their time in their foster care placement.
Councillor Roy Perry, Hampshire County Council’s deputy leader and executive lead member for children’s services said: “The good with outstanding features rating is testament to the dedication and support of the staff within the service but also to the high-quality care which our foster carers give children and young people.
“We know there is still work to be done to develop the service further. We have just raised our allowances for Hampshire carers in recognition of the value we place on them. We hope this will help attract more people to foster for the county council.”