Verve Recruitment CIC – The change-makers in foster care recruitment.

Verve Recruitment CIC is a Foster Care Recruitment service solely for the Not for Profit sector. We are the change-makers in foster carer recruitment, and we aim to increase the number of foster carers with Not for Profit Charities. However, we aim to recruit foster carers with experience and skills to give vulnerable children the support they need; because they need more than a bed. They need a safe and loving home with foster carers who genuinely understand children, with time to dedicate and meet those needs.

More importantly, we need foster carers matched with Not for Profit Agencies and Charities who recognise their invaluable experience caring for vulnerable children. Furthermore, they also respect the motivation that drives them to become foster carers.

The motivation that drives us is unique, and for me, the motivation to set up Verve CIC 3 years ago was frustration. I was frustrated because I knew there was another way to recruit foster carers, and I put my money where my mouth was; I cashed in my pension and took a leap of faith into the unknown!

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Verve Recruitment CIC – The story so far…

Having worked within the Independent Foster Care sector in recruitment, I know the bonuses and profit made by businesses from children in care. I also know that companies make profits, and there is nothing wrong with that. However, making millions in profit from vulnerable children and young people by charging exorbitant fees with Local Authorities is crass.

Because of this, vital support services are now closed, and, as a result, we created a vicious circle, a circle where vulnerable children and their families are now the victims. The lifelines they relied on at one time, like Sure Start Centres and support networks for families and children in need, went, and even worse, COVID 19 came to stay.

To help, I created campaigns and worked with other Not for Profit organisations in helping vulnerable families; if families had better support, there would be fewer children in care. Furthermore, if families in need had essential items, like food parcels, knitted baby clothes, blankets and toys for their children, then Mum would have more money to spend? Such as paying the mortgage, rent, or putting the heating on.

So, we have a double-edged sword here. Firstly, we created campaigns to recruit people as potential foster carers. And secondly, we work within our community to help vulnerable families and children, making a difference where it’s needed most; in the home.

To date, we have received:

300 + Foster Care/ Supported Lodgings enquiries

75+ Amazing Ladies who kindly donate time and support for our Knitting Appeals.

45+ Not for Profit Charities and Community groups we support in our communities.

500+ Knitted Toys we donate to foster children that are included in the welcome packs they have with their Charities.

500+ Bereavement Blankets, Knitted Hearts and Teddies to support families and people affected by Covid 19

1500+ Knitted Baby Clothes, Blankets and toys donated to local Sure Start Centres, Community Centres and Mother and Baby units to support Mums and their babies.

Verve Recruitment CIC – Creating campaigns that engage…

When I set up Verve Recruitment Ltd 3 years ago, I did what most people do; I trusted someone to understand what I wanted and help me achieve my aims. The agency I chose didn’t understand my needs or my motivation, and thus, they delivered a glossy website that didn’t reflect me; they hadn’t listened to what I wanted and showed what they felt I needed.

I was gutted and angry. But, my motivation was stronger than my pride, so I calmly created my website. I began writing blogs about what I felt people wanted to hear and know about and designed Social Media ads; the aim was to connect with the right people. Simply, I had a message I wanted to get out there, and it wasn’t all about foster care recruitment…

Verve Recruitment Ambassadors – Ladies with a heart and a conscience.

Verve Recruitment Ambassadors are ladies who came together, through different charities, with one common aim. They understand what needs doing for the vulnerable in their community, and they do it. Our Ambassadors work within the Armed Forces, NHS and Food Poverty sectors, supporting community groups and many Not for Profits. We know the pandemic has caused severe hardship to many; however, it brought charities and community groups together, and we are networking like never before; because our consciences say so.

Before the pandemic, many charities would go it alone and then take the glory; this created mistrust, especially for those charities who could only do so much for their community. They had to join forces to achieve results because families struggled to be effective. The pandemic had closed many shops and services we once relied on; we had to respond, or families and sectors of our society became vulnerable and at risk.

Verve Ambassador’s, community groups and young people came together.

Claire Marie Street represents the Armed Forces Community in Greater Manchester. Claire is a Director of the Troops Naafi; and the Salford Veterans Community Centre in Eccles, Manchester. Claire and her dedicated volunteers are a consistent smiling face, delivering hot meals, with a bit of banter to Armed Forces Veterans to ensure they are okay during the pandemic. In fact, they are often found waiting on the tables for the Breakfast Club, merrily chatting away with Armed Forces Veterans who regale them with banter. Claire works with young volunteers from local Army Cadets, providing a strong peer role model for these fantastic young people.

Claire and her very willing volunteers bring a smile every Saturday at the Troops Naafi in Salford.

It’s not hard to understand why the Breakfast Club is so successful, and both parties return week after week. Strong friendships begin, and the young people have a history lesson, with a brew from some of the nicest people they could meet. And as for the Veterans? Many Veterans are elderly; they live alone and don’t speak to someone from one day to the next; Saturday is the day they look forward to. Thus, Saturday is the day where friendships are built from the love of breakfast, with a listening ear to help them feel alive and respected.

Young people and children are at the core of what we do…

Yvonne Simms runs the Salford Food Parcel project and the Holiday Hunger project in Salford. When Yvonne needs Xmas presents for families in Salford who are struggling, Claire and her veterans rise to the challenge. They do this because they are local people who help each other. It’s not because we are charities or community groups, we see something that needs doing, and we do it. Furthermore, when Armed Forces Veterans or families in Salford need emergency food parcels, Yvonne and her team of young volunteers deliver every time.

Yvonne came up with the Knitted Baby Clothes appeal idea, which created a huge response from the blog. Moreover, many of the ladies who responded to this appeal admitted that the pandemic had made them feel useless. They wanted to help, and knitting for others, especially Mums and their babies, made them think they, too, had value. Furthermore, many of these women had faced hardship in their lives; the pandemic brought out a need to do something because they wanted to protect children from being vulnerable. And if a knitted coat, hat or blanket helped to achieve this, then that is what they would do.

Verve Recruitment Knitting Appeals made women in the pandemic feel useful again…

My Mum was one of these ladies, she was recovering from a stroke, and I asked her to pick up her knitting again to take her mind off things. She did, and her tiny blue cardigan for Jeremiah was the first of thousands we have donated to local Sure Start centres, community centres and Mother and Baby units who give them directly to Mums at no cost whatsoever!

As time went on, we created campaigns for Bereavement Blankets, knitted hearts and teddies for Salford Royal Hospital, together with premature baby clothes for the Manchester Royal Infirmary.

Sadly, my Mum passed away in October last year; and I know first hand the comfort the knitted hearts bring to families. I have never felt prouder in my life of my Mum at that moment; she had no idea of what she had done. She had inspired me; I carried on with the knitting appeals, and she allowed her beautiful home to become a mecca of knitting needles, drop-offs and much-needed wool for the many women who came to call.

Finally, I was brave enough to convert to a CIC…

Mum knew what it was like to struggle and was a massive advocate for women standing together. More importantly, she hated Boris with a passion and equally hated injustice to children, especially children made vulnerable by the postcode in which they live. Finally, we recognised the dedication and love she brought to others by her kindness and love for other women. Two days before Mum passed away, I received the notification that Verve Recruitment Limited was now Verve Recruitment CIC.

Like many women today, Mum knew there was a better way; she had lived through many changes in her life. However, the future was scary. However, if knitting was a way to alleviate the fears, or delivering a home-cooked meal with a smile and a bit of a chat, was another way, we would do that too. Another way was to inspire others into doing something that made a difference and made you feel good anyway; Mum did that and hadn’t even realised it.

Thank you to the Ladies who walked before us…

Thank you to the ladies who had walked before us and shared their skills. The ladies who walk with us now and the generations of young ladies with clenched fists will walk with us, and when we leave, they will carry on the walk and share these skills with their children. ‘

Hilda Mary Croston, my Mum.

Mum knew that for children to flourish, they had to have safe and loving family homes to feel protected and belong in. Sadly, some children must move from their homes; subsequently, they need foster carers who understand and have the skills to meet every child’s needs.

Verve Recruitment CIC; helping you to understand the fostering criteria…

To make a difference in children’s lives, we need to know the criteria of becoming a foster carer. However, there are many types of foster care, including short term, long term, emergency care, respite care, Parent & Child, sibling foster care; there are so many decisions to make. Therefore, we need to recruit and think differently and find foster carers who instinctively know …

Verve offers impartial advice on the fostering role, the process of becoming a foster carer and the criteria for Foster carers that Not for Profit charities need.

We have extensive experience in the Foster Care Recruitment industry, from working within an Independent Fostering Agency, being in the care system ourselves and working with children and young people; our unique blend of skills, when joined together, make us stronger.

Foster carers are the voice children need…

And for children, this strength is a powerful ally because we are not afraid to stand up for children, advocate, and be their voice when they need us. Consequently, when we speak with potential foster carers, we know what we are looking for. Simply, vulnerable children don’t need a bed; they don’t need a mother figure; they need stability, consistent love, boundaries and a feeling of being safe.

Verve Recruitment CIC- the change-makers in foster care recruitment

Verve Recruitment CIC is the change-makers of Foster care recruitment; we listen and understand the foster care recruitment challenges; subsequently, we adapted and grew to meet those challenges.

As many of us know, we have no idea what the future holds, pandemic or no pandemic; however, children in care need our help more than ever; especially siblings and older children. If you have experience caring for children and have a bucket load of patience, time and a sense of humour, please get in touch. We will match you with a Not for Profit that is right for you, which subsequently provides a better match for the children you support.

If you want to find out more about what we do, to become a foster carer or are a charity that would like to work with us, please get in touch. Together, we can all make a difference; Rest in peace, Mum, you did well x

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Can you foster?The most in-demand types of foster care are Sibling foster carers & Mother & Baby foster carers to keep families together.