Fostering services in Rotherham have been rated ‘good’ by inspectors – who found they effectively protect children and young people from harm.
The Ofsted team found good quality support for foster carers and excellent links with education, health and other services.
Children’s needs were being met, including situations where brothers or sisters needed a placement together.
Foster carers generally demonstrated a good understanding of their youngsters’ needs and their views were considered and valued.
The report revealed children said they felt safe and were positive about their relationships with their carers, developing strong attachments to them.
Coun Paul Lakin, Rotherham Council cabinet member for children, young people and families, said: “The inspectors were particularly impressed by the emphasis on safeguarding and child protection.
“The safety of children is our highest priority and the fact this report recognises the achievements we have made in this area is welcome. This is further evidence the continued improvements in services in Rotherham since 2010 are real and sustained.”
Joyce Thacker, council director of children and young people’s services, said: “Inspectors were particularly impressed with the children they met, who told them what it was like to live with foster carers in Rotherham and that they felt part of the families they lived with.
“You cannot get better and more appropriate praise for a service than from the children and carers involved with it on a day-to-day basis.
“I am proud of this report and the recognition services are thought of so highly.”
‘Dot’ and her family have been fostering for Rotherham Council since 1999.
She said: “During our time as a foster family we have cared for more than 20 children, the majority of which have been babies.
“The fostering service has been supportive to me and my family during difficult times, especially when we were caring for a terminally ill child and when she passed away.
“There is always someone there at the end of the phone to help you or just listen if you are having a stressful day and need a sounding board.”