A Dromore couple have been recognised as ‘Foster Carers of Distinction’ at this year’s Foster Carer of the Year Awards.
Julie and Evan Jones have been fostering for Action for Children for the last eight years and have looked after the same two children during that time.
They arrived just before Christmas 2010 and the social worker couldn’t get to the house due to lying snow, so Evan took a tractor to get through the snow and pick them up.
Julie always knew she would be a foster carer. As a 16-year-old working with a young person in a local Gateway Club she realised the impact of providing one-to-one support. She decided that day that she would foster in the future.
Praising Julie and Evan for their “commitment and determination”, Kathleen Toner, Director of The Fostering Network in Northern Ireland, said: “It was a real pleasure to meet Julie and Evan and hear about the real difference they are making to children’s lives.
“Their commitment and determination to support children in foster care is inspirational.”
The Foster Carer of the Year Awards evening took place during The Fostering Network’s Foster Care Fortnight (May 14 - 27).
The annual campaign celebrates the contribution of the fantastic work of the 2,100 foster and kinship foster families in Northern Ireland, as well as shining a spotlight on the need for 200 additional foster families this year.
Northern Ireland continues to need more people to consider fostering. Increased numbers of foster carers will allow fostering services to better meet the needs of a particular child and have a better chance of finding the right home for each child, first time.
Anyone who thinks they have the relevant skills to be able to look after fostered children, enjoy a challenge and have a spare room can find out more at www.thefosteringnetwork.org.uk/couldyoufoster