The new John Lewis Christmas advertising campaign provides a heart-warming depiction of two foster carers welcoming a new foster child into their home, and is a welcome spotlight on a vocation that is both vital and often underappreciated.
TACT CEO Andy Elvin said: “While the DfE has been in a state of flux with constantly changing ministers, John Lewis has launched a fantastic, public awareness campaign for fostering. TACT and the fostering sector have long lobbied the government to fund a recruitment advertising push for more much needed foster carers. Let’s hope that the advert inspires lots of people to consider fostering.”
The John Lewis campaign has been warmly received by foster carers and social workers alike. All agree that it shows that foster carers play a crucial role in making often traumatised children and young people feel safe and welcome, at a difficult and disorientating time in their lives.
Faye, TACT foster carer in South East London said of the John Lewis ad: “It illustrates the lengths we go to for our young people, and the ad was just the more superficial physical and social aspect, there’s tonnes of emotional investment that doesn’t get seen or appreciated sometimes.”
Christine McGillvary, a TACT Area Manager said: “It’s such a lovely advert and great to reflect the commitment and lengths that foster carers go to, to connect with the children and young people that come to live with them, to make them feel cared for and safe.”
Christine added: “For a child or young person, moving in with a new foster family can be an extremely confusing and lonely time. There will be a lot of caring as well as hard work for everyone involved, and crucially, what is reflected in the John Lewis advert is how important the beginning is. Something as simple as learning to skateboard – finding a way of connecting with a young person on their level can be a really powerful way to build the trust and connection that will set the relationship on solid foundations.”
Carol, a TACT foster carer from Leeds said: As a foster carer I was very emotional after watching the add and it just shows the lengths that we as carers will go to, to make a chid welcome. Making Christmas special for my foster children is so important.”
Children and young people will always come first at TACT. This is why we carefully and expertly match children to our fantastic team of foster carers all over the country. We will never pressure our carers to take a placement just because a bed is available, it’s always about matching each young person with the most suitable carers.
Fostering is a challenging but hugely rewarding role and the need for more foster carers has never been greater. There are very few barriers to becoming a foster carer. Enquire about becoming a foster carer here.