Today, Saturday 7 May, the Irish Foster Care Association (IFCA) launches its new journal, ‘Foster’.
Chairperson of IFCA, Teresa Connolly announces, “I take great pleasure in introducing the first issue of ‘Foster’, our new journal on fostering in Ireland. The journal aims to inform those with an involvement in foster care of current issues in fostering and developments in policy, practice and research. It is an exciting initiative that we hope will make an important contribution to the world of fostering and help to stimulate debate, discussion and developments in the field. We are keen to cultivate a culture of learning within the sector, a culture where we are creative in our practice and where we review and evaluate that practice. We hope to nurture an inquisitive and reflective approach that is supportive of foster carers, social workers, other practitioners in the field, and academics alike.”
Ms Connolly explains, “Two issues of ‘Foster’ will be published every year. The first issue draws on the theme of IFCA’s most recent national conference, ‘Fostering Well-being’.
Dr Rosaleen McElvaney, clinical psychologist and psychotherapist currently lecturing in psychotherapy in Dublin City University, launches the journal and comments, “It is wonderful to see an issue dedicated to the theme of well-being, the well-being of children and young people in care and of all those in care-giving roles”.
Dr McElvaney adds, “It offers a wealth of material ranging from an exploration of the dynamics of caregiving and how the well-being of those in caring roles might be supported, to several approaches that support the social and emotional development of children and young people in care and their relationships, key issues and recommendations in relation to service provision for children in care from the Office of the Ombudsman for Children and the findings from a survey of the emotional and psychological support needs of carers, the children in their care, and their families, carried out by IFCA.”
Ms Connolly comments further, “Jim Cantwell encapsulates the potential and power of what the foster carer offers a child in his or her care in his article, ‘Using emotional intelligence in maintaining our selves and our relationships in practice’,
‘I offer you a place; I offer you a structure; I offer you a relationship of care, kindness; I offer a model of woman or man that will be open, reflective, strong, and safe; I offer my commitment to include my own process as part of our relationship, and I hope you can take some of what you need from what I can offer in our time together.’”
Ms Connolly concludes, “We look forward to issue 2 later in 2016 that will focus on Legal Issues in Foster Care with contributions from legal practitioners, voluntary organisations, Tusla, the Child and Family Agency and academics.”
Media contacts: Catherine Bond, IFCA CEO, 086 0425279; Breda O’Donovan 086 4118630.