Well here we are, we have made it to the end of April! What an incredible, tumultuous time the last 5 weeks have bought to us, while we’ve all had to adapt and adjust to the world that COVID bought, we each experienced it’s impact and has affected us all in different ways. While the outlook in South Australia looks promising, it is likely to take us, all of us, adults and children, some time to integrate what we have experienced and find our new normal. In the process of this, I would like to take this opportunity to remind you all of the importance of self-compassion and to reach out to us, if you are finding that you are needing additional support at this time. As Foster Carers, you are able to access our EAP services through Life Design or Cognition. There are also counselling and family relationship services available through the Family and Relationship Services team at Lutheran Community Care. We also have a team of Financial Counsellors within Lutheran Community Care who are also working remotely and proving services over the phone or through Zoom. You’ll fnd the contact number for these services below.
(For a phone/video appointment please call:
Northern Suburbs, Barossa Valley, Adelaide Hills – (08) 7070 6717
Morphett Vale – (08) 8326 4688)
The last few weeks, there’s understandably been many more questions about how things are working, and feedback about some things that aren’t working so well, since these questions and queries have become quite common I’ve sought to answer some of these questions from carers below. Before I get into answering these, I just want to take an opportunity to remind you all that we have set up the LCC Foster Care Community Facebook Group.
I will be going live again next week Thursday 7th May at 11.30am to provide updates from LCC and to take any questions you may have. See you there!
We have noticed that many of these transitions either children moving between carers or coming into care are being managed on a case by case basis, what works for the child and what works for the family. Children are still coming into care requiring emergency placements and as to be expected we won’t know full medical history. It is important to have measures in place in the home to practice safe hygiene while also welcoming new children into your home.
Communication issues from DCP
There have been a range of issues around communication and varying experiences of contact with children’s case workers/social workers during this time. I raised this at the recent Recruitment and Retention taskforce and was assured that this would be communicated back to DCP offices. There are also issues in carers receiving communications from the DCP, these are not reaching all foster carers.
When we receive these, we will also send these through. While for some carers this might be a double up, we want to ensure that you are all getting the same information.
LCC Facebook Group membership
At this time it has been decided with the Carer Reference Group to keep the membership of the group open to all LCC foster carers and at this point in time, Andrea and Tessa as LCC staff representatives.
Child placements and referrals
There has been some conflicting information about the need for placements at this time, having it fed back that another agency has been overwhelmed with capacity. This has been followed up, and what seems to have happened is another organisation has called carers asking for their capacity for additional placements should they be needed. I have opted not to take this path, instead have discussed this in the teams to be following up on modification requests from foster carers. If you are in a position and want to be able to offer more at this time, I would encourage you to talk to your case worker about a modification. There is also the option to speak to Donna directly on the Placement team, this may be a good idea if you are wanting to explore the idea but not sure how this could work for you and your family. Children coming into care have a range of needs, come from varying backgrounds and are at different ages and stages of their development. We therefore need a diverse range of families that can meet the varying needs of children coming into care.
This was raised through the Carer Reference Group, as there has been a directive for all children in care to have the flu vaccination. I am still yet to confirm this, as we have not received the directive. In the meantime, for medical related questions about a child in your care contact the DCP worker for the child, or your support worker can contact them on your behalf if you need.
The Carer Conference
We are still moving ahead with our plans to host a conference in July, although our original vision for the event has needed to be adapted in light of our current circumstance and we have shifted the focus to holding the event as an online virtual summit. We are still working away at the details of this, and I will provide updates in subsequent newsletters as we progress this.