Over the past two years, Gibraltar has seen an increase in the number of people who have opened up their hearts, lives and homes, to accommodate children who, for various reasons, cannot live with their families and who require alternative placements, which may be temporary, but in some cases, may be permanent.

In the last two years, the Care Agency has organised successful fostering awareness and recruitment campaigns and is pleased to have been able to retain its foster carers despite some of the challenges this commitment may bring, especially in a community as small as Gibraltar. The Team has been able to retain the foster carers through its on-going supervision, individual and collective support sessions, training programmes and responses from the Social Workers.

This year’s Gibraltar Fostering Campaign, is themed, “This is Me”.  The Children’s Services have teamed up with the Department of Education to produce an advert, which will be launched on Monday 20th November 2017 and will form part of the GBC View Point programme on the 23rd November 2017.

The advert has been acted, filmed and produced by local university students, teachers and volunteers, who have given their time willingly to contribute to this worthy project.

Ms Nicole Viagas, Head of Children’s Services said: “This year’s campaign aims to help the community understand that children, despite the abuse and neglect they may have suffered, still have a right to a childhood and to grow up within a loving family. It aims to provide a message of hope, one that dispels the myth that children who have endured abuse and neglect will not achieve their goals in life.

The Minister for Health, Care and Justice, the Honourable Mr Neil F. Costa MP said: “We are looking forward to this annual initiative, which was made possible by the vision and efforts of my colleague Samantha Sacramento, to promote the values of fostering in Gibraltar and to raise awareness and understanding on the importance of the role of foster parents. The Care Agency’s team of excellent professionals show maximum dedication and commitment and it is thanks to their efforts, and those of the foster parents, that it is possible to transform children’s lives. We passionately believe that children can have a second opportunity to emerge from a difficult family background and have the chance to succeed in life.

This year’s awareness campaign is again aimed at the recruitment of foster carers and begins on 20th November 2017.  Anyone interested in fostering is most welcome to attend. The programme consists of the following:

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Information stall – Casemates Square 12pm – 2pm

Fostering workshop - John Mackintosh Hall 6pm – 7pm

Wednesday 22 November 2017

Information stall – John Mackintosh Square 12 – 2 pm

Thursday 23 November 2017

Fostering workshop - John Mackintosh Hall 6pm – 7pm

Documentary - to be screened on Viewpoint

Friday 24 November 2017

Fostering workshop - John Mackintosh hall 2pm – 4pm