Some of you will know that over the last 18 months AFA have been involved in a national research project about fostering undertaken by Mark Beek, Gillian Schofield and Julie Young from the University of East Anglia. This was commissioned by the Department of Education and was published in October 2016.

The researchers looked in depth at 17 young people in long-term foster care with AFA foster carers. Some of you and your parents/foster parents were interviewed for this. These are some of the things that were said in the report:

 “(AFA foster carers) let the young people be young people and they are very nurturing. They let the young people know that they are loved, and they are valued. And the carers’ own (adult) young people, they absolutely have included them all into their life” (Child’s Social Worker)

“We are a normal family, just because there is the word “foster” in front of it doesn’t mean anything. Yeah you know there is a back story, the foster part of it is the back story, but other than that we are just a normal family. You know I get taken to things like friend’s weddings and birthday parties, and it’s lovely (Young person)

The report concluded that AFA is “successful in providing a high quality service to both foster carers and young people”.

Graeme Duncombe and Nigel Pickering, Directors of AFA, have said the following about the report:

“We are really happy to have been involved in this research and really pleased that the quality of our services has been recognised. As a fostering agency our focus is on providing stability, consistency and the very best possible standard of care for children in order to help them to achieve their full potential”.

Many thanks to any of you who helped with this research.