Kinship Carers To Get Improved Support With Pilot Project

Improving support for Kinship carers is the aim of a new pilot project by Adoption UK (AUK) Scotland.

a grandmother with her grand daughter playing together on a digital device

The charity has received funding from the Scottish Government’s Whole Family Wellbeing Fund to provide additional therapeutic and educational support for kinship families in four local authority areas over two years through its new Foundations for Families initiative.

Around 4,400 children in Scotland are in kinship care, defined as being looked after by a relative or family friend when their own parents are unable to care for them. Kinship care provides children with emotional security, stability and a sense of identity, and can reduce trauma by enabling children to remain close to their families, schools and wider community.

AUK Scotland and Adoption, Fostering and Kinship Alliance (AFKA) Scotland co-deliver the Kinship Care Advice Service for Scotland (KCASS), which provides advice and support to kinship families. Over the past year, the service has seen increasing numbers of calls to its helpline from carers struggling to access much-needed help.

Foundations for Families will develop a new approach to support, enabling families to access therapeutic support faster and providing a dedicated education worker who can advise kinship families whose children are struggling at school. The project also aims to speed up the identification of at-need families in order to deliver help as quickly as possible.

The pilot will be strengthened by external evaluation and will be informed by the voices of young people participating in AUK Scotland’s engagement-led #EProject. Invaluable input has also been given by the Kinship Care Advisory Group, who have helped inform the project through their lived experiences of kinship care.

Fiona Aitken, AUK Scotland director, said:

“Through our community engagement we have heard extensively from kinship carers about the need for additional support for their families. 

“This, with critical input from our advisory group, has evidenced the need for development of therapeutic support services specifically for kinship care families, and we are delighted that the investment from the Whole Family Wellbeing Fund will support this pilot project enabling us to do that. 

“We’ll be working closely kinship carers and partners to shape and evaluate the delivery model to ensure that this service provides much needed support for families in Scotland.”

Click on this link for information about: Kinship Care

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