On the 29th November three of our team swapped their beds for sleeping bags to raise funds for the youth homeless charity Centrepoint. Sleep Out is Centrepoint’s flagship annual event, taking over the unheated Victoria Baths.

Sleep Out doesn’t aim to replicate what it’s like to be homeless, but it does give you an insight into the challenges faced by homeless young people: the biting cold; the lack of control; and the struggle to carry on with the next day on minimal sleep. Everyone who took part had a fundraising challenge to reach over £350 each.

Funds raised will support Centrepoint’s work in Greater Manchester. The charity began working in the region earlier this year, supporting 2,000 young people each year. Centrepoint provides practical support and advice for those at risk of homelessness, and helps young people to turn their lives around by gaining essential life skills, tackling physical and mental health issues and moving into education or employment.

The night started so well as the team arrived around 7.30pm and were provided with a nice warm meal followed by entertainment for the night.

Sharon, Jo and Sam found out more about Centrepoint and how they tackle youth homelessness and the effects it can have on the young people who have to cope with it daily.

The team took part in workshops about the work Centrepoint undertake and even had a bed time poem read to them from Louise Wallwein MBE. Louise was brought up in 13 different children homes and wrote her first play aged just 17. At 11.30pm it was time for bed and the temperatures began to plummet.

They had only taken a sleeping bag, minimal layers and a roll mat. Lights out happened at 12pm and they felt utterly disorientated once the darkness swept over them. Sleep seemed to elude the whole room with people turning and squirming on the cold marble floors. There was a great sense of vulnerability however, the crucial difference was normality was only a few hours away which is a far cry from those sleeping rough on the streets of Manchester every day.

By 6am the majority of the room began to stir, and the Capstone team all awoke feeling achy, tired and grumpy but this is all part of the unique experience of Sleep Out! Every day, thousands of people have to get through long days of work or learning, having spent the night sleeping outside or in a dangerous place.

The great news is our team from Capstone Foster Care managed to pass the target and raised £1,150.16 towards the fantastic work Centrepoint achieves. We’re thrilled to also say that the fundraising total so far from the night is £65,937!


Capstone North recently held a Capstone Carers Catch Up at Frankie and Benny’s in Blackburn.

We had a lovely mix of carers join us on the day including, a young couple, Kim and Pete who started fostering in their 20’s, Janet and Richard who have just been approved, a single male carer, Chris, who transferred to Capstone, and Mariam and Nazir who are just a few weeks into their first fostering placement with us. The mix of carers shows us that becoming a foster carer isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ model.

Linked by the children they foster, Kim and Pete look after the brother of a child looked after by Chris. The support between them highlights exactly what it’s like to be a part of the Capstone family. The friendships made at Capstone through events, training and catch ups enable us all to support each other. For new carers and even those thinking of fostering, these get-togethers are important to settle any fears about fostering!

Social worker Adam D and Recruitment Co-ordinator Adam B enjoyed hearing all of the insightful, flowing conversations and positive honest stories about the carers’ fostering experiences and Capstone.
If you’re interested in becoming a foster carer, or want to find out more information then please do not hesitate to get in touch. Check out our events page to find out when the next meet ups are happening or simply pick up the phone to talk to one of our friendly members of staff.


On Friday 10th November, Capstone North were pleased to host a small celebration for the carers who had been with the agency for ten years or more!

This was a lovely opportunity to thank all the carers for their commitment to the agency but, more importantly, to the young people they have supported during that time.

All the carers received a card and some flowers to say ‘Thank you’ and we all chatted about ‘old times’ and how they had enjoyed all the years they have spent as carers.

The afternoon was a great opportunity for everyone to reminisce and talk about their successes, sadness – about children who had left them – and joy – for the children they were currently supporting and all their achievements!

Additionally, the agency was also able to acknowledge the services of Jo Kelly and Carole Bell (Senior Supervising Social Workers) who have been with the agency for a combined total of 25 years!

Thanks to everyone who attended for making it a great day of catching up with old friends and colleagues, as well as reflecting on what has been achieved.

 

‘We joined when it was a small premier agency and still feel we’re part of a close knit family and still get the great support from everyone. Fostering to us is challenging, fun and we have great support from Capstone Foster Care’

‘Loved the chance to meet up with the other long standing carers, who we don’t always get chance to meet It was nice to be recognised for the long service and commitment we have made to Capstone I enjoy fostering with Capstone because ALL staff are warm, friendly and supportive.

The training is relevant and well-presented and we feel part of “ the family” that is Capstone’- Jacqui Cummings, carer.

I enjoyed it very much, it was nice seeing people I hadn’t seen for a long time. It was also very nice to know that we are all valued and appreciated. I enjoy working for Capstone, knowing I’m offering a secure and caring home to children with a difficult past to move forward.- Phyllis Aspinal, Carer.


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