Action for Children is a UK charity which works hard to improve the lives of youngsters. They help more than 380,000 children annually through an array of services – including a sector leading fostering service here in Wales.

As Action for Children is not-for-profit their focus is entirely on the wellbeing of children and the families who take them in – whether this is short term or long term. They offer 24-hour support to foster families along with extensive training, financial help, regular support groups, and a full calendar of activities and social events.

Here in Wales, Action for Children’s facilities include an in-house therapeutic service developed from years of experience in successfully supporting families.

The Leader:

Therapeutic fostering services manager for Wales, Matt Lewis, has encouraged those who can open their heart and home to a child (or children) in need, to get in touch with Action for Children to find out more, whether they are interested in caring for a child for a few days or for a lifetime!

“Children come to us from local authorities all over Wales and often these children have come from extreme poverty or faced bad experiences. Many have never experienced what we would call love.”

“We are looking for families with room in their heart for the fostering journey, those who can offer love to a child or children in North Wales. Everything our team does is about improving the lives of children.”

He added that when fostering through Action for Children everyone – including the foster parents – are “part of a fabulous team” and that foster families are a valued part of this team.

The Leader:

Along with individual attention and support – via social workers and the therapeutic team – the charity has plenty of fun for families, hosting events, activities, and competitions.

There’s a real “family feel” among the team and foster parents – but don’t just take our word for it. Jordan’s life changed for the better when he found a foster family through Action for Children.

“They treated me like family, and I instantly felt like I was wanted,” said Jordan, now an adult.

“I had a sense of belonging and I felt safe, which is what I needed. It meant absolutely everything to me. All I’ve wanted all my life is normality, and this is normal life for me.

“I’m 99% sure if not for my foster family I’d be dead or in a very, very bad way – them taking me in and treating me like their son changed my life.”

The Leader:

Jordan’s foster father, Paul Barnes, agreed that foster children “quickly become part of the family” and admitted that him and his partner tried a different fostering agency but the “support wasn’t there” so they returned to Action for Children.

“The therapeutic support Action for Children offers is very important,” said Paul, who encouraged anyone considering fostering to take the plunge.

“You get so much out of it,” he added.

“There are problems, but there’s nothing that can’t be sorted. Having the help and support of someone like Action for Children makes it easier for you.”

The Leader:

Another couple who fostered through Action for Children - Ann-Marie Morgan and Ryan Button - praised the service and likened it to a “big extended family” with plenty of support in place.

“It’s amazing,” said Ann-Marie. “Everyone knows everyone and anyone you speak to will know about the child and their history.”

The non-commercial agency has also welcomed the decision by Welsh Government to end commercial fostering in Wales, which will remove profit from the care of vulnerable children.

Community Care reports that under this new legislation: “New providers seeking to register with Care Inspectorate Wales would have to demonstrate not-for-profit status from 1 April 2026, with existing for-profit firms needing to transition by 1 April 2027.”

The Leader:

This change means that only not-for-profit organisations in Wales will be able to offer fostering, explained Matt, which he described as “quite a brave” move from Welsh Government.

“Many commercial fostering agencies don’t look commercial on the face of it,” he explained.

“I think a lot of people in Wales don’t realise that agenda is there.”

Fortunately, people can transfer easily from commercial agencies to Action for Children, and benefit from the fabulous support they will receive from the Action for Children team. Putting the wellbeing of children at the forefront, Matt has encouraged potential foster families to make an informed decision.

The Leader:

“It’s an important decision who you foster with, and we encourage you to speak to us to find out what we offer. We welcome you to come and see where we are and learn about the support that we give to our children and families.”

You can find out more about Action for Children online at actionforchildren.org.uk

If you want to find out more about fostering through Action for Children in North Wales, you can call Cathryn on 01352 759597 or e-mail fostering.wales@actionforchildren.org.uk