TO mark Foster Care Fortnight, Hillingdon Council has launched a payment and benefits package for foster carers who can now earn up to £1,500 per week.

They also receive a 25 per cent reduction in council tax when looking after a child in care. 

Hillingdon says it is the most competitive package in London, including £1,000 off utility bills, a winter fuel allowance and a family Merlin and leisure pass. It equates to an annual salary of up to £72,000. 

There are currently 365 children in the council’s care in Hillingdon, but with a national foster carer shortage people are needed now more than ever.  

Jeanette Isaacs, 59, from Ruislip, has been fostering with Hillingdon Council for six years. She said: “The cost of living has gone up so much, so the new payment and benefits package will be a good incentive for many people to sign up.

“I foster because my heart is in it and I wanted to enhance a child’s life, but the new offer shows further recognition for the valuable job we do.

“I’ve got two grown up children and my divorce had a huge impact on us all. It was a traumatic experience, but we came through it stronger and I felt we had something special we could offer someone.

“I felt it was important to give back and fostering is very rewarding – you can really make a difference.” 

The council’s fostering service is running several events throughout Foster Care Fortnight (May 13-26) including a community walk at Ruislip Lido on Tuesday, May 21, and an information stand at Hillingdon Business Expo on Thursday, May 23.  

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