The urgent need for more foster carers to look after children in Blackpool will come under the spotlight during the next two weeks.
The resort's desperate need for more carers is being highlighted during Foster Care Fortnight, which gets underway on Monday.
Blackpool couple Carl and Diane Mitchell have fostered dozens of children over the last twenty years.
They were awarded the MBE in this year's Queen's New Year Honours.
They've been explaining more about how the fostering process works, to encourage more people to sign up
Click below to listen:
And despite the coronavirus lockdown, applications to become foster carers are still being taken.
Councillor Williams said: “As lucky as we are to have our current group of foster carers in Blackpool, there are still many children out there in need of a foster home close to their local community and we urgently need more foster carers to look after them.
“Our team remains busy and continue to help people start their fostering journey with virtual home visits and training.
“We are still taking applications and our initial visits to potential foster carers are now virtual.”
She added: “Foster Care Fortnight is a great way to recognise the hard work and dedication of our foster carers and say thank you.
“We are very proud of everything our carers do to change children’s lives for the better and would like to thank each and every one of them.
“Our foster carers come from all backgrounds and bring a wide range of life and work experiences.
“I would urge anyone who feels they might have what it takes to be a foster carer or knows someone who might be suitable to get in touch and find out more.”
Blackpool has one of the highest rates of children in care in the country, with 590 looked after children according to figures from last autumn.
This year’s Foster Care Fortnight theme is ‘This is fostering’ and is designed to show the positive difference it can make to the lives of children and young people.
Foster carers receive full training, ongoing and dedicated support, 24 hours a day and a financial allowance with help tailored to each foster child.
For more information, visit www.blackpool.gov.uk/foster or call 01253 477888.