If you want news, discussion, and everyday fostering ‘knowhow’, together with factual information about foster care, you can make yourself at home here. We’re confident that you won’t be disappointed!
Who Foster Care Matters Is For
Foster Care Matters is a resource hub for foster carers, aspiring carers – and you – if you are interested in foster care. In a nutshell: it’s a site packed with news, insights, and helpful fostering resources.
If you are a foster carer, you play a crucial role in your foster child’s care. You provide them with a safe, nurturing environment, where they feel valued and cared for. We can all agree that what you do for them is awe-inspiring. But there will be times when it’s hard, and you want to complement the support you get from your fostering agency or local authority. That’s where Foster Care Matters comes in.
If you are an aspiring foster carer, there’s plenty here for you too. Whether you want general information about foster care or resources to help you prepare for the role of fostering a child. The good news is: whatever point you are at, there’s a fostering community here ready to share tips and practical advice about the role of fostering children.
Who’s Behind Foster Care Matters?
Hi, I’m Andy Loverock, the founder of Foster Care Matters. As you’re here (and I know you are) here’s a bit about the team and me.
I’m lucky to have enjoyed a happy childhood. My only regret is that I grew up without knowing my dad. Thankfully, I’ve got a fantastic mum who gave me the secure base we all need during childhood and beyond.
My work background is in healthcare, having worked as a Registered Mental Nurse for twenty-three years. Since 2011 (along with my partner Aileen) I’ve successfully fostered 13 children.
Fostering children inspired me to create FCM. And it’s where my small team and I talk with straightforward honesty about what works in foster care (and what doesn’t). But that’s just part of the story.
As a team, we’ve got decades of combined specialist knowledge in the areas of mental health, teaching, nursing, and working with ‘looked after’ children. We want to improve outcomes for more foster children by sharing some of the lessons we’ve learnt along the way.
Fun Facts about Andy:
- I’ve successfully resuscitated someone
- I’ve visited 21 different countries
- I’ve never met or spoken to my father
- I had football trials with Wolves & Coventry
- I cried when both of my sons were born
- I watched my eldest son being born on my 21st birthday
- I’ve been a Baggies supporter for 44 years
- I’ve played golf with Don Goodman and the late Cyril Regis
- I’ve played rugby against Nigel Starmer-Smith
- My favorite recreational pastimes are playing golf, tending to the needs of our demanding house cat, and trying to write
- I’ve visited almost every football ground in the UK
- I’ve ridden a horse bareback through the Cuban hills (it was incredible)
- I watched a full post-mortem without passing out
- I’ve sat within 10 feet of 6 vultures (they’re very big)
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How Foster Care Matters Can Help You
Government statistics show that outcomes for looked after children are often worse than we would all like them to be.
You can think of FCM as a central hub where you can connect with your peers and find the resources you need.
We aim to do that by gathering, organising, and sharing useful information about foster care.
Here’s the thing: FCM is NOT a fostering agency or a charity. We’re NOT in competition with any of them either. In fact, we want to support the valuable work that they all do.
Resources for Diligent Foster Carers
A lot of the information you find about foster care just skims the surface. You’ve seen it: the kind that’s either too vague or hard to figure out. Our fostering blog is updated every week with content that’s easy to digest.
CAREHUB is the home of our fostering community. It brings learning, interaction, and insights to your online space. As a free member, you’ll get access to exclusive information, training, and networking resources.
If there’s something you want to know about fostering, we’ve got a great place to get your questions answered. The good news is: if you can’t find the answer to your question, you can ask us, and we’ll happily answer it.
Meet The Foster Care Matters Team
ANDREW LOVEROCK – MANAGING DIRECTOR
Andrew worked as a Qualified Mental Health Nurse (RMN) for 23 years and has extensive experience in both inpatient and community settings. It includes spells in assertive outreach, prison, mother and baby, drugs and alcohol, and brain injury units. He is also an experienced foster carer and has carefully selected a team of advisers with decades of combined specialist knowledge, to help guide Foster Care Matters towards becoming the UK’s leading resource hub for foster carers.
Connect with Andrew on LinkedIn
ALYSON DALEY – BUSINESS SUPPORT MANAGER
Alyson is a Lecturer and Module Leader in Psychology at Bradford College. She has a BSc (Hons) Psychology and Criminology, a Diploma in Life Coaching, and almost four years of experience working as a Restorative Justice Practitioner for Kirklees Council. Alyson always demonstrates a genuine willingness to help others, she is passionate about promoting positive outcomes for children in foster care, and plays an active role in supporting the Foster Care Matters Team.
Connect with Alyson on LinkedIn
STACEY BROWN – SOCIAL MEDIA CO-ORDINATOR
Stacey has a wide range of experience within the care profession, working in positions ranging from a Support Worker to an Operations Director. She has a QCF Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care and Children’s and Young People’s Services. Her roles have included positions in care homes, supported living, nurseries, mainstream schools supporting SEN students, residential schools, and mental health placements.
Connect with Stacey on LinkedIn
Advisory Board Members
UK FUNDING ADVISER
Sarah is a Funding Officer at the Big Lottery Fund Scotland, where she is responsible for the assessment and management of grants. Sarah has a BA Hons Political Science and Modern History, and MA Hons Political Science. She has worked on both Scottish and UK Government initiatives and brings with her knowledge of third sector funding and community development. She has a strong commitment to partnership working and is particularly interested in the role creativity can play in making communities happy and healthy.
EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY ADVISER
Jamie is the Executive Chairman of C-Learning and a Google Premier Partner with over 1,000 clients globally including the UK, the Middle East and Africa. He has a BA (Hons) in Literary Studies and holds a Masters in Business Administration. Jamie is also the co-founder of Statistics24, a Google analytics company and an active supporter of new technology start-ups. He is an accomplished TEDx speaker ‘Education in the Digital Age’ and has a history of working with entrepreneurs to help develop their businesses from start-ups to six-figure enterprises.
DR HELEN HOLGATE
Helen is an independent Trainer, Counsellor, and Consultant with experience of training foster carers and associated professionals. She is a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and holds a Master’s Degree in Education (MEd) (Guidance and Counselling). Helen has ten years’ experience of fostering children and is passionate about the potential fostering has to change the lives of children and young people. She wants to use her experience as a foster carer, sexual health counsellor, academic, general counsellor and trainer to help improve outcomes for children.
COACHING & COMMUNICATION ADVISER
Henrietta is a professionally certified coach (PCC), trainer, communications consultant and writer who specialises in issues around fostering and leaving care. She has worked with Coram BAAF, Fostering Network, The Who Cares? Trust, A National Voice, Action for Children, Barnardo’s and a range of government departments, local authorities, and many other not-for-profit organisations. Henrietta is the author of nine books for Coram BAAF including Thinking about fostering? and The Control Freak trilogy of young adult novels about care leavers.
UK CAMPAIGNS ADVISER
Nik has held an interest in supporting charities and good causes from an early age. He is an active member of his local community, helping to raise awareness for local mental health initiatives and to combat homelessness. Nik has successfully organised and managed regional and national marketing campaigns such as The Long Way Back (a 500-mile walk from Edinburgh to Portsmouth to raise awareness of mental health) He has also been actively involved in projects such as Sleepout UK and fundraising events for Cancer Research UK.
CHILD EDUCATION ADVISER
Marion is a Therapeutic and Special Educational Consultant and Freelance Writer. She has a BA in Psychology and MEd in Education with a concentration in Special Education. Marion has happily worked with and supported children, adolescents and young adults in a variety of school settings for over 30 years. As a Mum of two beautiful sons, Marion is always eager to support and partner with parents, guardians and care givers on a variety of issues. She is a strong advocate of Mental Health in children of all ages and wants to ensure they are supported in positive and creative ways in and out of the school environment.
FASD CARE ADVISER
Joy is an experienced Teacher, Foster Carer, and founder of the House of Little Miracles – a project dedicated to raising the profile, increasing understanding and changing the narrative of FASD through education and communication. She has a BA (Hons) Primary Education (QTS) Education, and over the last ten years has successfully worked with and raised children affected by FASD. Joy has worked with social services training both social workers and adopters/carers. She delivers training to many schools, has supported over 140 SENCos across the country, and regularly speaks at the university to future professionals.
POLICY DEVELOPMENT ADVISER
Justine is a Safeguarding and Quality Assurance professional having worked with the Local Authority, Kent Safeguarding Children Board and local charities for over 15 years. She has written and delivered training and development packages and has specialised in assisting organisations to develop their safeguarding practices when working with supply chains and spot purchased services. As an experienced Quality Manager, Justine has also helped organisations to write and establish policies and procedures and prepare evidence to demonstrate compliance with quality awards and standards.
Joanna is a qualified Health Trainer, Mentor and Coach, with a passion and flair for helping others and has held client support roles, since obtaining a BSc in Psychology in 1993. Joanna co-wrote a Fatherhood project for young dads in custody which received Merit of Best Practice and was published in UK Youth Magazine. She has worked as a Shared Lives Carer for McIntyre providing social leisure and friendship opportunities for clients with learning difficulties and is currently employed as Warrington Borough Council’s first Employee Support Officer, a role dedicated to counselling and coaching.
CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE’S HEALTH ADVISER
Deborah is an Independent Looked-After Children’s Safeguarding Nurse and has a BSc (hons) in Nursing and a Post-Graduate Diploma as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse. She also works nationally for the nursing governing body as a fitness to practice panel member, sits on Foster Carer Panels, works with national charities on the quality assurance of residential children’s homes, assesses safeguarding qualifications and is soon to begin supporting local authorities in implementing new ways of working in foster care provision.
DR ANTONIO G FARRUGGIA BOCHNAK
STRATEGIC PLANNING ADVISER
Antonio is an educational consultant, achievement coach and an experienced foster carer with a strong interest in strategic development. He has a degree in Community and Youth Studies, a PhD in Education, and is currently studying an MA in Character Education at the University of Birmingham. Antonio is the Vice-chairman of the Frank O’Sullivan Syndicate – an initiative aimed at putting Youth Clubs back on the UK map. He is also the CEO of Birmingham City Clubs for Young People – a charity which inspires and supports young people with their social and educational development.
DEBORAH SOMERSET MALIA
UK SAFEGUARDING ADVISER
Deborah is a professionally qualified Adult Learning Tutor, Mentor, Nursery Nurse, and founder of DSM Safeguarding Solutions Limited. She has been involved in criminal justice, education, training, safeguarding practice and consultancy for over 30 years. She is an accredited Safer Recruitment and Freedom Programme (domestic abuse) trainer and has trained both nationally and internationally. She is currently studying for an MA in Advanced Child Protection. Deborah has collaborated with organisations including the NSPCC, Barnardos, Kidscape and the Children’s` Society
Partner with Us
We’re happy to work with individuals, companies or agencies. We’re also keen to support good causes and charities that work with children. Just tell us how we can work with you – or your organisation.
Maybe you want to share your experience or expertise by writing for us. We’re always on the lookout for original articles about foster care and related topics. Or perhaps you’ve got a product or service that can be used by foster carers.
If you want to discuss working with us, use this form. We’ll respond quickly to try and ‘make things happen’.
Thanks for Visiting
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