As a Muslim Social Worker, it is alarming to know that there are more Muslim foster children in care than there are Muslim foster carers. Children are being placed outside of their faith group. An organisation called My Foster Child estimates that the number of Muslim children in care is around 3000 to 5000. Sheehzad Amin who leads the My Foster Child explains “a stable and loving upbringing from a Muslim foster care family who can nurture a child with the true teachings of Islam is something that cannot be replaced. Positive integration into one’s faith community does not only lead in the long-term to more well-rounded individuals, but this also encourages more healthy and cohesive communities.”
There are a lot of misconceptions in the Muslim community about fostering. Fostering is a rewarding and challenging experience. It enables the foster carer to provide stability and nurture children who are unable to live with their birth parents. The placement may last a day, a few months or even years. Some children are able to return home if their family situation improves.
We urgently need Muslim foster carers to meet the cultural and religious needs of these children and help change a child’s life for the better. Islam places a great importance on the proper care, well-being, and upbringing of children, especially those in vulnerable situations. Unfortunately due to a shortage of Muslim foster carers Muslim children are being placed with non-Muslim families.
The Muslim Foster Network offer support and resources to Muslim foster carers. Financial support is also available to foster carers, this benefit covers food, clothing and other household expenses that may be incurred. The network offers an effective community awareness program which aims to raise awareness on the need for Muslim foster carers within the UK. They work extensively with renowned Islamic institutions and community organisations at the grassroots level to encourage diverse support for this initiative.
We cannot let our children down!
Please sign and share this petition to encourage our Mosques and Muslim community organisations to raise awareness of this important issue.