Children moving from residential care into family homes with foster carers will benefit from a new service.
The council commissioned initiative, Fostering Better Outcomes, will support children and young people who are in or who may enter residential care to move into a family setting.
Cllr Nicole Meardon (Lab), Cheshire West and Chester’s cabinet member for children and young people, said: “Placement breakdowns can have a huge impact on a child or young person in care and disrupt their development and future.
“By investing in Fostering Better Outcomes we are committed to providing our children in care with the best start in life and the support they need to reach their potential.
“The service will help up to eight children and young people a year giving them an opportunity to live and flourish in a family setting and receive the specialist support they need.”
Worcestershire based children’s services group Core Assets, the company awarded the contract to provide the service, will employ a range of highly skilled foster carers to provide each child with the support and stability that they will need to help them adjust to their new home.
The council points out that children and young people in residential care often find it difficult to move directly from a residential home to a foster care placement and find it challenging to cope in their new home.
The new service will fill that gap by employing specialist foster carers with experience of dealing with children with different needs. They will also be supported by education specialists, therapists and mentors giving them the best chance of enjoying family life and having a successful future.
Similar initiatives managed by Core Assets are said to have seen positive results with children remaining in the same home, providing them with more stability improving school attendance for many of the children involved.
Richard Dixon at Core Assets said: “Core Assets is looking forward to providing foster families with the necessary skills and expertise to support each young person in the transition from a residential environment into a family setting.
“Having successfully provided similar services for over three years we are looking forward to bringing our knowledge and experience to help more of Cheshire West and Chester’s young people.”
In October last year the council secured funding of £939,000 from the Government’s £80m Life Chances Fund which will be used to commission the new service which launched this month.