Fall in number of Rotherham children in care

Cllr Victoria CusworthCllr Victoria Cusworth
Cllr Victoria Cusworth
THE number of looked after children in Rotherham has seen a “significant” reduction of ten per cent in a year.

There were 509 youngsters in the care of RMBC in November – down from 565 in the same month of 2022.

Rotherham Council said this “significant decline” had been despite an increase in unaccompanied young people transferring here via the National Transfer Scheme for asylum seeking children,

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RMBC’s Corporate Parenting Strategy 2024-2027 says the reduction in looked after children was “a result of a high-quality intervention service, which supports to reduce risk and enable children to remain at home with their families.”

The new three-year strategy will go before the council’s cabinet for approval on January 22.

The document sets out RMBC’s ambitions for children in care, with priorities including listening to youngsters’ views and delivering an outstanding care leaver service.

Pledges also include increasing the number of in-house foster carers and supporting the opening of more children’s homes in the borough.

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Councillor Victoria Cusworth, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “The recruitment and retention of foster carers is one of our key priorities.

“We value our foster carers who do an amazing job and our investment through increased fees and allowances demonstrates this.

“We have also opened four new children’s homes because we know that where it is safe to do so, it is better for Rotherham children to be placed within the borough.”

As of November 2023, Rotherham had 509 children in care and 323 care leavers living in a variety of placements.