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Hackney foster carers honoured for changing children's lives for the better

PUBLISHED: 16:44 24 May 2011

Hajra Aboo who received an award for foster caring at City Hall on Friday, with the London Mayor's advisor Pam Chesters. Photo credit Hayley Madden

Hajra Aboo who received an award for foster caring at City Hall on Friday, with the London Mayor's advisor Pam Chesters. Photo credit Hayley Madden

Archant

Three Hackney foster carers were amongst those honoured at a City Hall event last Friday, celebrating the important role they play in the lives of young Londoners.

Television producer and presenter David Akinsanya joined the Mayor of London Boris Johnson to encourage more people to consider a career in fostering at the event which ran during Foster Care Fortnight.

Husband and wife Yusuf and Hajra Aboo and William Ross were the foster carers nominated by the council’s Fostering Service.

Yusuf and Hajra have fostered for Hackney for 17 years, with well over 100 placements, and often take on the most challenging children.

As well as taking children in overnight, some have stayed as long as 10 years.

A council spokeswoman said: “Their enormous warmth has given hope to so many children who have been neglected and abused, yet they remain incredibly humble in their task.”

Meanwhile, single man William was inspired to take up fostering after working with children in secondary schools who were coping with difficult home lives.

When he became a freelance consultant he realised he had the time and flexibility to give a child some stability.

“I came into this hoping to change a child’s life for the better and put them on the right path - in fact the child has changed my life for the better as well as my family and friends.

“They taught me how strong and adaptable as even a child so young can be, and we built a strong bond which will benefit both us for years to come.

“It is exhausting but it is the most rewarding experience you can ever have and the joy you bring to that child will make it all worthwhile.”

Already 2,000 more foster carers are needed in the capital but more children are entering the care system all the time, with the situation being particularly bad for teenagers.

To find out more about becoming a foster carer, visit www.couldyoufoster.org.uk

For other ways to get involved and support fostered children, visit www.fostering.net/time-to-care.

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