Buddies 4 Foster Carers

E-News June 2016


Welcome to Buddies 4 Foster Carers E-News.

As we continue to develop and make new friends our E-news reflects this developing network.

After securing a bursary from VAST to design new branding, and many weeks of reviewing ideas we hope you like the result,

Your E-news has grown since the last publication (April2016)

SPOTLIGHT - will keep you updated on new, developing and ongoing projects.

SPEAKERS CORNER - A new feature for YOU to share your passions, Idea's and concerns with other Staffordshire Carer's, and by linking with Staffordshire's "care4child" secure Forum we hope that a supportive/ debating/questioning online community will flourish.

WHAT'S HAPPING? - Find out what Buddies 4 Foster Carers friends and colleagues are up to we are building web space to enhance this feature furthering our aim to make the Buddies4fc web site a one stop place for information, help and support.

DIGITAL Citizenship (previously E-Safe) -

We have renamed this section as we are all citizens of the digital world and we need to help our children and young people become caring, thoughtful and importantly aware Citizens of the online world. As the internet and excess to it is now everywhere so are the problems that we associate with it, we are committed to keep information and resources as relevant as we can but ultimately as Citizens of this digital world we all have to allocate time to stay informed.



We intended to announce the dates of the first Coding club in this issue but at the last minute we realised that they clashed with England's Match's, as soon as we have rearranged the dates we will circulate,

Thanks to the financial support we received from Councillor Derick Huckfield (Newcastle- u-Lyme) and the Virtual school these clubs will be well equipped and supported. The first session will be open to anyone with the slightest interest whether they plan to become involved or would just like to hear more, we will explain how we hope the club and the groups within the club will develop, we feel it is important that although groups of between 4 and 8 mixed ages will make up the club these groups should also work together to support each other and we hope as the club grows we will fund raise to have team building days, some ideas being discussed are Canoeing, camping, paintballing. As a club Newcastle will take the lead in building and installing camera traps on Cannock Chase we have been in long discussions with Darryl and Nick(Forest Skills) and they are as excited as we are to get going with this.

FISHING CLUB - (We are looking for Anglers) - Are you a keen angler?, would you be interested in sharing your passion and knowledge with other's? do you think with the support of Buddies 4 Foster Carers we could see what interest in the idea there is ?Interested please contact us and we will meet and talk over your thoughts - Contact Form

In the Next Issue - Read how the Camera club is working with schools to engage with young people on the edge of exclusion.

New Feature

Ever had something to say?

felt passionately about a subject?

had an idea that you would like to share?

Like to share a solution to a situation you experienced?

Then this is the place.

Contact us here.

A Staffordshire Foster Carer writes "It’s the most rewarding thing I Have ever done"

Read the full article

Do we label children in care by using words that we would never normally use?

Read the full article

Over the years we have heard countless foster carers comment on some of the language we use in describing events around children in care Buddies4fc support their drive to change the language that has become attached to the children we care for. Like to add your thoughts to this subject? Use the contact form on our web site and we will publish your thoughts in the next E-news - join with others and discuss how best to challenge those around the children we care for to make change happen Care4Child secure Forum (contact Training for your log on details)

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person, or if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”

― Barack Obama

Buddies 4 Foster Carers were thrilled to read an article published in the Fostering Networks Head-Heart-Hands newsletter and would like to share with everyone

Read Full Article


What is it like being a refugee in a strange country? A Staffordshire Carer came to this country as a young girl and now fosters young asylum seekers read her story and hear her thoughts around this emotive topic.


Staffordshire Letterbox Club - Staffordshire's Virtual School purchases book packs. For the 'Letterbox Club' children will receive their own personalised book parcel. The scheme is tried and tested and supported by colleagues in the school's library service.

The scheme is for children in Years 1, 3, 5 or 7 if you have not received this information yet or have not responded please could you do so.(contact your support worker for further information)

How to Help with reading and Ten top tips for Carers can be found here

The Voice Project -

The Voice Project is a place in Staffordshire where the voices of looked after children, vulnerable children, young people and families working with Families First can have their say on issues that matter to them.

Children, young people and families can give their views about things such as Schools, Social Workers, where they live and what happens in their lives. Because of what children, young people and families tell us we can let those in charge know what is good and what needs improving.

Coffee and Cake - Join us and share your views and experience's, meet the voice team, learn more about the work we do.

Children and Young People's Voice Project, check out when and where the forums are.

Find out more HERE

Stafford libraries summer Reading challenge -

It's back and better than ever- the "Summer reading Challenge" this years theme

is The Big Friendly Read celebrating 100 years of Roald Dahl.

The Summer Reading Challenge website

The Summer Reading Challenge website allows your child to log the books they have read during the summer – and beyond. They can also find new books to read, recommended by other children, take part in competitions and play games.( a great way to share the experience with your child )

Have a look around Now and Join in the fun.

Summer Reading Challenge


Buddies 4 Foster Carers aim's to keep Staffordshire Foster Carers as informed and up-to-date as possible, we will try to keep you informed of tech advances and highlight the benefits and possible dangers. Gone are the days of sitting in the corner of the family room with a computer, today the internet is everywhere and easily available, most of us have mobile devises, Phones, tab's, Tablets and laptops, so we all need to take responsibility for how we behave and how we help our children and young people better protect themselves on the web, we need to help them become positive, caring and responsible Digital Citizens this is not easy for adults that grew up in an era without all this high speed communication, we have no template to draw from we have to respond to the challenges that the technology presents while still learning about it.

Rather than regurgitate information already out there we will give links to information as we come across it.

Looked After Children can be more vulnerable to approaches from online strangers

As a carer for looked after children, there are specific risks that the young people you look after may face online that children living with their birth parents will not generally have to worry about.

Read the full article by C.E.O.P. (Child Exploration and Online Protection) and Parent Zone

To allow information to be accessible as and when it is needed we have set up pages

within www.buddies4fc.org.uk to store information that appears in the e-safe section of the newsletter

ooVoo - a video chat and messaging app, which allows up to 12 people to connect for free. Think Skype or FaceTime but with 12 people communicating at the same time. Designed for over 13’s, it promises users the highest quality video calls.

Instagram - 5 things Parents should know about Instagram.

YIK YAK - you may have heard of it but you probably haven’t heard good things. It’s an app that allows users to post in a geographical area.


(European Network Against Bullying in Learning and Leisure Environments)

Deaf Children Resources - The National Deaf Children’s Society have joined forces with Childnet International, part of the UK Safer Internet Centre.

Parental controls from your internet provider-

Get safe On Line

Cyber Street wise

Disrespect Nobody

Step Up