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Eleanor and Ashley John Baptiste 2

Teenager living in foster care in Pembrokeshire wins prestigious Fostering Excellence Award

Merch yn ei harddegau sy’n byw mewn gofal maeth yn Sir Benfro yn ennill Gwobr Rhagoriaeth Maethu fawreddog

A teenager from Pembrokeshire with ambitions of becoming a police officer has won a Fostering Excellence Award, the UK’s most prestigious fostering accolade, recognising her exceptional achievements.

Eleanor was awarded The Fostering Network Award for Young People, sponsored by John Lewis Partnership at The Fostering Excellence Awards in Birmingham on Tuesday (17th October).

Eleanor came to live with her foster carer Jokë, when she was five years old.

From the moment she arrived at Jokë’s, Eleanor always strived to do her best and was determined to overcome the challenges she faced. Through hard work and perseverance, Eleanor enrolled in a Uniform Protected Services course at college two years ago. Her determination shone through, and she passed with flying colours, has secured a place at university and aims to work in the police force.

Jokë, who fosters with Foster Wales Pembrokeshire, the local authority fostering service, credits Eleanor for all she has done to make a success of her life and says “I will be by her side every step of the way – my home is her home."

Melany Evans, Service Manager from Pembrokeshire County Council, said: “We are so proud of Eleanor for winning this award. Eleanor has demonstrated her determination to achieve her goals.  This is a moment to reflect on the amazing achievements of our young people and of our fantastic foster carers who go the extra mile and ensure that their aspirations can become reality.  It also shows how important a long term, stable home is for our young people in care, enabling them them to build better futures.”

The annual Fostering Excellence Awards are the UK’s most prestigious foster care awards, celebrating outstanding achievements in fostering and recognise those who make exceptional contributions to foster care every day. 

The award ceremony took place at Birmingham Repertory Theatre, hosted by broadcaster, TV presenter and inspirational speaker Ashley John Baptiste, who grew up in care himself.

Chief executive of The Fostering Network Sarah Thomas said: "This year marks my first Fostering Excellence Awards as CEO and I am over the moon to be able to celebrate the outstanding work of people within our fostering communities in this way.

"‘It’s been such a joy to read everyone’s stories and hear about exceptional people who go above and beyond to support others. It’s an honour to be able to celebrate these incredible achievements with our annual awards as well as highlight the vital role fostering is playing to those outside the fostering community.

"The fostering community is truly a special one and all our winners, and everyone else involved in fostering in the UK should be incredibly proud of their contributions to foster care.

"With more than 7,000 fostering families needed in the UK, it’s vital that we get more exceptional foster carers on board to provide stable homes for children and young people."


Image 1: Eleanor and Ashley John Baptiste at the Fostering Excellence Awards 

Image 2: Eleanor and Jokë 

Notes to editors

For more information, interviews and pictures please email or phone 020 7620 6441.   

  • The Fostering Network is the UK’s leading fostering charity. We are the essential network for fostering, bringing together everyone who is involved in the lives of fostered children.  
  • The Fostering Excellence awards, sponsored by The Mortgage Brain are the UK’s leading foster care awards. They celebrate excellence and outstanding achievement in fostering and recognise those who make exceptional contributions to foster care every year. Award categories include:  
  • The Fostering Network award for foster carers, sponsored by The Mortgage Brain recognises foster carers who have made an exceptional contribution to foster care 

The Fostering Network award for kinship carers, sponsored by The Mortgage Brain recognises kinship carers who have made an exceptional contribution to foster care 

The Fostering Network award for a social work team recognises fostering teams who are delivering excellent practice which is helping to improve outcomes for children and young people in foster care

The Fostering Network award for children of foster carers, sponsored by Williams Giles Xeinadin Group celebrates children of foster carers aged 24 and under who have welcomed and supported a child who has come to live with them 

The Fostering Network award for young people, sponsored by John Lewis Partnership celebrates all types of achievements by young people with experience of foster care, aged 16-24 

The Jon and Kathy Broad award recognises the outstanding work of a foster carer who specialises in fostering children and young people with learning disabilities. 

Fostering Community Supporter award recognises a person for group of people who have given their time and effort to promote or support fostering 

Fostering Friendly employer of the year award recognises a Fostering Friendly Employer who has supported foster carers in their employment

About fostering  

On average in the UK, a child comes into foster care every 15 minutes. 

Currently there are over 90,000 children in care in the UK and three quarters live with foster families. 

In England and Wales, over a third of foster placements will be outside of a child’s local authority boundary, so it’s vital more foster carers are recruited to bring this number down.