‘Foster caring is challenging but there’s always support’

Oxford Mail: Jenny and John Barney have been fostering kids for 17 years Buy this photo Jenny and John Barney have been fostering kids for 17 years

NOT content with bringing up eight of her own children, Jenny Barney has taken in more than 50 foster children from across Oxfordshire.

She is one of Oxfordshire’s 293 dedicated foster carers and she and husband John have taken in dozens of children in the past 17 years.

Now she is urging others to take on the role as part of Foster Care Fortnight, which began on Monday.

Mrs Barney, who takes in children in the Oxford area as a full time job, said it is a hugely rewarding experience.

The couple look after children of all ages, including many teenage mothers and their babies.

The 60-year-old, who lives in the Oxford area, said: “Children come with a lot of complex needs and it is going to be challenging. But you have got to remember you can always ask for help and there is always support there.”

Mrs Barney took up fostering at a friend’s suggestion and said: “Only three of our kids were still at home at the time and all our children have always been fantastic about it and have always accepted the children who come in.

“We’ve had children stay in an emergency for just a night but in other cases we’ve had someone who was meant to be here a week and stayed four years.

“The first boy we had was 10 years old, the same age as my son, and he stayed three and a half years before he went to live with his grandmother.

“We speak to him frequently and see him about once a year now.”

She added: “One girl who stayed with us for four years went off to university and is now a theatre practitioner so we are very proud of what she has achieved.

“No matter how long children are with us, any milestone they reach is always a rewarding feeling.”

Maria White, from Oxfordshire County Council’s fostering team, said: “Fostering is a way of working as part of a team, in your local community, to help turn children’s lives around.

“Specialist training and support is given, carers receive an allowance and in some instances an additional fee. All you need is a desire to help children reach their full potential.”

An information evening on fostering will take place tonight from 6.30pm to 8pm at County Hall, New Road, Oxford.

For more information, visit oxfordshire.gov.uk/fostering or call 0800 7835724.

Who needs a home?

Children of all ages need foster parents for short- and long-term care, including:

Teenagers – about half of children in care are 12 years and older.

Sibling groups who need to be placed together.

Babies and toddlers who need to be placed with carers who are at home full-time.

Disabled children – who need placing with people with skills and experience to care for a wide range of disabilities.

Carers are paid fees like £168 a week for children aged up to two, rising to £276 a week for 16- to 18-year-olds.

Extra costs for spending like mileage and presents are also available.

  • Our top stories:

2014 Oxfordshire GCSE results school by school

Oxford Mail: It's A-Level day

12:30pm Tuesday 19th August 2014

Full GCSE results for Oxfordshire schools for 2014

Connor Tremble trial: Blencowe describes the moment he fatally stabbed Connor Tremble

Oxford Mail:

12:52pm Thursday 21st August 2014

WILL Blencowe has described to a jury the moment he fatally stabbed 17-year-old Connor Tremble.

LONDON WELSH: Olly Barkley backs Exiles to surprise this season

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Thursday 21st August 2014

LONDON Welsh are not just in the Aviva Premiership this season to make up the numbers.

Purr-fect ending to tale of cat missing for a decade

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

GEORGIA Hand was just a few months old when the family cat Morgan went missing 10 years ago.

Coroner rules out unlawful killing verdict in gem shop raider's death

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

THE grieving family of Clint Townsend yesterday said his robbery of a city jeweller’s was “completely out of character” as a coroner ruled he had not been unlawfully killed.

Thieves snatch £1,600 from pay-and-display machines

Oxford Mail: Pay and Display proposals could net council £160,000 a year

8:30am Thursday 21st August 2014

MORE than £1,600 has been stolen from pay- and-display parking machines across Oxford in the past five years.

Alleged helper ‘wanted phone smashed’

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Thursday 21st August 2014

A MAN on trial for helping killer William Blencowe told his girlfriend to take a hammer to his phone after he was arrested, a jury has been told.

Hundreds of scorned bikes heading for the scrapheap

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

NEARLY 1,000 abandoned bicycles have been tagged with warnings by Oxford City Council over the past two years.

Three people taken to hospital after multiple car crash

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

A THREE-car crash on the A40 left a man needing hospital treatment for serious leg injuries.

Unexploded shells discovered in scrapyard

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

UNEXPLODED shells, thought to be from the Second World War, were detonated yesterday after being unearthed in a scrapyard.

Quarter of mums are main earners

Oxford Mail: Mulberry locked cosmetic purse

6:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

More than a quarter of Oxford mums are the breadwinners in their families with 27 per cent contributing more than 50 per cent to their household’s income.

City home care service passes top inspection

Oxford Mail: Care Quality Commission logo

6:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

A CITY home care service has passed all key standards from an inspection by the national health and social care watchdog.

Young cancer survivor busks it for charity

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

A SCHOOLBOY who overcame cancer raised money for two of the charities that helped him by busking in Oxford with his sister.

Credit union in funding crisis after pulling out of merger

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Thursday 21st August 2014

THE Blackbird Leys Credit Union is facing a last-minute race for funding after pulling out of a merger with its rival.

 

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree