Posted on: Tuesday 4 January 2022
Channel Four Bake Off finalist Jon Jenkins has spoken about becoming a foster carer to help support a new campaign.
Jon and his family, who live in Newport, became foster carers a year ago. They have spoken about experience in a new video as part of 'A Great Thing to Do in 2022' campaign to encourage more people to give fostering a try.
Jon said: “We’ve been fostering now for just under a year and we’ve fostered one child - he came to us on an emergency weekend and we’ve still got him 10 months later. He is absolutely lovely and it’s been a really positive experience for all of us.
“It’s always weird when you get into something like fostering because you don’t know how it’s going to be, but it’s been so positive for myself and my family. So I hope this video will inspire other families to give it a try because you do get a lot from it.”
The social media video has been produced by all the local authority fostering services in Gwent, as part of 'A great thing to do In 2022'.
The videos show Jon and his family sharing their journey into fostering, from their first enquiry, through to the experience for their own children – all while Jon bakes away in the kitchen.
It’s estimated that 550 new foster carers and families need to be recruited in Wales every year.
Throughout Gwent and Torfaen every child in need of a foster carer is in the care of their local authority. By helping children to stay within their local community wherever possible, Torfaen is able to keep them connected with their friends, their school and their sense of identity, which not only builds confidence but also reduces stress.
While no two children are the same, neither is the foster care they need. There is no ‘typical’ foster family. Whether you own your own home or rent, whether you’re married or single. Whatever your gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity or faith, there are young people who need someone on their side.
Executive Member for Children, Families and Communities, Councillor Fiona Cross, said, "Whilst many of us have had family and friends there to support us during difficult times faced over the last 18 months, many children and young people across Wales need that support more than ever before.
Why not make this the year for resolutions that last a lifetime and become a foster carer with Foster Wales Torfaen".
Torfaen Council will be sharing content on social media channels throughout January to help more people understand and value fostering and the positive difference it can make to young peoples’ lives.
If you think you could make a difference by becoming a foster carer in visit: https://fosterwales.torfaen.gov.uk/