Have you ever thought of making a contribution to assist children and young people who have come to Ireland alone, displaced by war, famine and civil unrest. Did you know that you can assist children and young people in this situation by becoming a Tusla carer.
Supported Lodgings is an accommodation and support scheme for young people aged 16+ who are unable to live at home but cannot live independently. It is a model of care that can be used with older teenagers being cared for by Tusla but is particularly appropriate for Young People Seeking International Protection and Unaccompanied Minors. This group of young people is particularly vulnerable, needing international protection in a foreign country without a parent or guardian and without the necessary language skills, however, they are also incredibly resilient; having made their way to Ireland alone. They usually maintain contact with their family of origin and often work hard towards reunification with their immediate family.
The Supported Lodgings scheme has many similarities with fostering, the assessment, training, support from Tusla and vetting process is the same; however it requires recognition that the young person may not need intensive parenting, rather they need support and guidance and a warm welcoming home. Supported Lodgings and your support can equip them with the essential life skills to reach their full potential as they grow into successful and confident adults.
Supported lodgings carers will be expected to create a safe and supportive environment where the young person can develop their confidence and life skills to eventually enable them to live independently. This will include helping them to budget, cook, clean, do their washing, complete forms, make and attend appointments and interviews. They will need to have a spare room and be willing to share their house with a young person, which includes giving them a key. As each young person in Supported Lodgings will be in the care of Tusla – Child and Family Agency, the normal care planning and review processes will apply which means working closely with the school and social work teams.
Carers undergo an assessment process and will pass through a Foster Care Committee, but it is shorter than the fostering assessment. Supported Lodgings carers are a diverse group, and can be couples, cohabitating or same gender, with or without children. They can be single, widowed, separated or divorced from various cultural backgrounds, employed or unemployed. They can own their own home or rent.
To find out more contact us by freephone, email or sign up for our upcoming online information session where our team will be delighted to answer any questions you may have.