‘Kinship care’ is the term for people who look after children who are part of their extended family. They can be the grandparents, siblings, aunts/uncles or close friends of children whose parents are no longer able to care for them. These people do a great service for the children by providing a stable family home and to society by saving the money that would be spent if the state needed to care of these children.
In 2008 the Scottish CAB service took on a national project - Kinship Care Service - aimed at helping those families stay together by providing expert independent and free advice specifically tailored to meet the needs of kinship carers.
‘In the family way: Five years of caring for kinship carers in Scotland,’ is a Citizens Advice Scotland publication which shows the outcome of the first five years of this project delivering a high quality advice and information service and puts the spotlight on kinship carers and the great contribution they make to our society.
The report identifies the project’s top 10 successes which include:
• We helped nearly 3,000 kinship carers in the project’s first five years.
• Nearly £1 million gained for those clients over that time,
• Free, expert advice for often complex problems,
• That advice is tailored for individual carers in different areas,
• Support and training for local authorities in their kinship care work