Cardiff University was commissioned in February 2021 to evaluate the pan Wales roll out of The Fostering Network’s Fostering Wellbeing programme. An initial pilot programme running in a South Wales Local Authority was evaluated by Cardiff University in 2017-2019.

The Fostering Wellbeing programme aims to improve outcomes for children looked after and includes a series of masterclasses delivered to a multi-disciplinary audience of the team around the child. The masterclasses aim to create a common language, understanding and approach to working with children in foster care, underpinned by the principles of social pedagogy. The programme also involves training foster carers to become foster care champions so they can provide peer support to other foster carers, educate other professionals about the needs of the child and to advocate for the child in foster care. The hypothesis is that the foster carer often has the most day-today knowledge of the child and their needs, and by ensuring the foster carer is a central voice in the team around the child, that the needs of the child are more closely attended to. 

The evaluation involves a survey of masterclass participants, interviews, focus groups and case studies. The research will run until May 2022. Dr Alyson Rees, Dr Nina Maxwell  and Bridget Handley will be the researchers working on this project. 

For more information about the evaluation please contact Dr Alyson Rees