BLACKBURN and Darwen residents have been asked if they can provide a home for children including two young brothers, a 12-year-old girl and seven-year-old boy.

They are just four of the 23 youngsters the borough council is determined to find a loving family for this summer.

The council’s fostering team has revealed that finding permanent homes for children in care is one of its biggest challenges.

Speaking during national Foster Care Fortnight which runs until May 25, its boss Karen Barrick said she needs to find long-term homes for 15 children between seven to 11 who are probably too old for adoption, three children aged 12 and over and five children under seven.

She highlighted four children, using assumed names so as not to publicly identify them.

They are: brothers Moh-ammed, eight, and Aziz, five, who speak English and Urdu, go to the mosque and enjoy celebrating Islamic festivals.

Mohammed is making progress at school while Aziz likes playing with toy cars and watching CBeebies. The brothers have a good relationship and we would like to stay together.

Amy – a bright and intelligent 12 year old, who needs a long term placement as the eldest child. She enjoys family based activities, but has low self esteem and needs carers who understand her behaviour. Amy loves animals and pets. She is doing well at school and wants to be a vet.

Sam, the seven-year-old, has had several placements and takes time to trust adults. After help with his behaviour, he is more relaxed and less anxious, making him ready for a final move to a long-term placement. He is making very good academic progress at school and is a big football fan who enjoys board games and riding his bike.

Ms Barrick said: “Many of our existing foster carers provide short-term place– ments for children, who may then either be able to return home to their families or be adopted.

“Adoption is not an option for every child in our care, depending on their needs and relationships with birth families. It’s a real challenge for us to find those children a permanent home so grow up in a stable, loving environment.”

Fostering is a paid role with extensive training and support.

Blackburn with Darwen Council currently has 141 foster carer households.

Click here for more information. -