Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, has thrown his support behind Kinship charity’s new #ValueOurLove campaign which aims to secure urgent government support for kinship families across England and Wales.
Kinship care is where a family, relative or close friend steps up to care for a child when their parents aren’t able to. Kinship carers are raising more than 162,000 children in England and Wales – more than double the number in foster care. Data released by national charity Kinship as part of the campaign estimates that there are 353 children in kinship care living in Denton and Reddish.
A new report released by Kinship alongside the campaign – The Cost of Loving – reveals that 8 in 10 kinship carers are failing to receive the crucial support they need, leaving many in crisis. Most worryingly, over a third (36%) of those not getting the support they need feel they may be unable to continue to care for their children due to the lack of support and the rising cost of living. This would have devastating consequences foras well as for the public purse.
Gwynne is himself a kinship carer to his grandson Lyle, and is also co-chair of the All-party parliamentary group on kinship care. Earlier this month Gwynne attended a reception held in the House of Commons to mark the campaign, and is urging local residents to support the initiative by signing kinships petition at ValueOurLove.Kinship.org.uk
Commenting, Andrew Gwynne said:
“I’m really proud to support this campaign. As a kinship carer myself, I understand the joy that it brings to your life, but also the extreme stress it places on families.
“We need the Government to incentivise and empower kinship care. That means providing kinship carers with the support they deserve.
“I would encourage local people to support this campaign by signing up at ValueOurLove.Kinship.Org.uk.”
Kinship’s Chief Executive, Dr Lucy Peake, said:
“Kinship’s #ValueOurLove campaign is urging the government to give kinship carers the financial and emotional support they need and deserve. They make huge sacrifices to care for children – spending life savings, giving up jobs and moving homes – but they have been ignored and left without support because they are family.
“Unlike foster carers, being a kinship carer is not a choice, it is done through love and often in times of crisis. Kinship carers must be treated fairly because raising a child costs money.
“We’re delighted to have the support of MPs such as Andrew Gywnne MP who can help us campaign for the changes kinship families in Denton and Reddish and across the country so desperately need.”