I had a call from the Social Work manager today regarding James (name changed). How would I feel about taking out an SGO for James?
Now this has been discussed before and I said no but it has now come up again. A Special guardianship order gives you more say in most things for a young person you are caring for up until the age of 18. So basically no more asking permission from social services every time you want to do something with the child.
I know James gets a bit ticked off when I have to wait for social services to give the go ahead for holidays etc. When you look at it you get the feeling that it would be beneficial. However the downside is that you lose some or all of your weekly allowance.
I know some carers, mainly those who work with special needs children, that have negotiated their own deal with local authorities, but for children without special needs this is unlikely. So I asked the question, what would be the financial package to which she replied that she would get back to me.
So I called my supervising social worker who had a fit at even the mention of an SGO because, basically, it means that I would no longer work for the agency. My general feeling was to say no. This is no reflection on James but, in fostering, things can change in a very short period of time and I needed the security of knowing that if James moved I could have another placement very quickly.
There has always been the feeling, in fostering, that local authorities used SGOs as a way of getting placements off of their desks therefore saving money. I would like to think that this is not the case, but it wouldn’t surprise me. So I will see what the local authority come back and take it from there.
James got home from school with a letter about the Covid jabs. I had been waiting for this and wasn’t a 100% sure what to do. I have had both of mine but I am an old’un and James isn’t so I have to discuss it with the local authority (see above).
My initial reaction is to say no as James is a fit young man and I haven’t heard of any youngsters being affected by it. But I have to follow procedures so I sent an email to his social worker.
Got a text from James’ football coach, today, with the arrangements for the weekend’s game which was to be played at the home ground. He named the team in the text and James was playing, which will be a relief for him as he is always nervous about being left out even when he has played well in the previous match.
James had been sent the same text so he was delighted and relieved. So we celebrated with a fry up for tea and watching football on the telly.
As he sat there talking about football I thought about how life must have been for him before he came into care. It gave me a nice feeling that he was in such a better place now.