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Sharing our Stories – CEO Update Issue 2!

The CEO’s letter

Just over two years ago we decided to launch the Andrew Turner Award. This was predominantly in recognition of our then Chairman who, over many years contributed so much to the continuation of the Trust. We have much to thank him for. As a result, we put aside a small pot of money each year and Carers and staff are encouraged to nominate our children for this award. I have always made it very clear that these achievements are all about the child or young person, as long as they are significant to them they are of importance to us. Therefore, it continues to be a real joy and a privilege to make these awards personally. Over the past two years I have had nominations ranging from a child being able to sit still for an entire school lesson to a young person achieving amazing A level results! The nominations are wonderful to read and in between the written lines the passion and commitment our Carers invest in the children they care for is almost palpable. Making these awards always gives me the opportunity to write to Carers personally to say a huge thank you for their work, it is always humbling to receive replies stating that the achievements are all down to the child or young person they care for and really nothing to do with them! Ordinary families doing extraordinary work, this is what CFT is all about!

Talking of extraordinary families, I am very proud to share with you all news of our very special award from the Fostering Network. Each year the Fostering Network ask the general public, the local authorities and fostering agencies for nominations regarding those outstanding individuals who make huge differences in children and young people’s lives. This can be a Social Worker, a Foster Carer, a former fostered child or a child who fosters. We decided to nominate several of our Carers across the Trust this year as well as a number of children who foster. After several weeks of waiting the Fostering Network informed us that not only had we been chosen to receive an award, we had been chosen from several hundred nominations to receive their most prestigious award, the President’s Award. This is a ‘one off’ award which from time to time they feel an individual or family is deserving of.

Clare and Mike Eynon and their daughter Becky will receive this award at the Fostering Network awards ceremony in London on September 27th. Alongside them will be the young mum they cared for several years ago. Tragically whilst caring for both mum and child Ajay passed away peacefully as a result of a life limiting illness. The entire family’s support, love, commitment and dogged determination in ensuring Ajay received the very best of times with his mum right to the end of his short life was nothing less than amazing to witness.

The Fostering Network spent a very enjoyable day in Mike and Clare’s home recently making a film about their experiences as Foster Carers for the Trust. This film will be shown on the 27th as part of the awards ceremony and will then be available to view on You Tube!

As I reported in an earlier edition we are also very busy ‘rebranding’. As such we have carried out surveys, sent out questionnaires and are working closely with a marketing company devising and designing our new logo and slogan to be launched in January.