A reception to recognise the invaluable contribution of Southern Trust Foster Carers has been hosted by Garath Keating, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough (ABC) Council.
The event held on Care Day, Friday February 17, was aimed at recognising the central role foster carers play in providing stable, caring homes for vulnerable children and young people whilst also raising awareness of the need for more foster carers.
Garath Keating, ABC Council Lord Mayor said: “Foster carers play an extremely important role in our local communities, providing invaluable opportunity, support and protection for many young people across our region. Foster carers are special people who often offer themselves and their homes unreservedly to help ensure that young people have sufficient emotional support and stability in order that they can develop and reach their full potentials.
“It takes a very special type of person and a huge commitment to be a foster carer.
“They are unsung heroes and it is therefore nice on this occasion to be able to acknowledge their invaluable contribution and efforts.”
Brigid and Jimmy Wray and their family have been foster carers for the Southern Trust for four years. Brigid said: “It was lovely that the role of fostering and the worth of looked after children was acknowledged at this event by the Council and Garath Keating, the Lord Mayor.
“I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to meet and spend time with other foster carers including those for whom I provide respite support. It was also an opportunity for me to catch up with children I have previously cared for and to see how they have grown and the progress they have made. Everyone at this event was made to feel special on Care Day.”
Colm McCafferty, Assistant Director of Corporate Parenting for the Southern Trust, said: “Our foster carers go beyond the call of duty every day, opening up their homes and their hearts to make a real difference to many young people who need to live outside of their immediate family for a period of time.
“This event gave our carers the recognition they very much deserve.”