A local fostering agency in Yorkshire is celebrating as their participation officer has been shortlisted for the prestigious National Children and Young People Awards. Nazma Liaqat, who has been a part of the Foster Care Associates team for four years, has been nominated for the ‘Children’s Champion Award’ for her significant impact in championing the needs and rights of vulnerable children.

The annual awards honour excellence in care for children, young people, and families, showcasing innovation and best practices and paying tribute to individuals or organisations that excel in providing quality care.

Recognising the vital role of the participation officer in offering high-quality care and support for children, young people, and families, Nazma has been shortlisted for her specific support of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children (UASC), aiding them in adjusting to life in foster care within the UK.

Nazma, who also won these awards in 2021 expressed her gratitude and excitement about the nomination and said: “I am incredibly honoured to be shortlisted for a second time at the National Children and Young People Awards.

“It’s great recognition of the hard work and passion I have put into ensuring that our children and young people feel comfortable in the UK and cared for.”

Melanie Murphy, registered manager at Foster Care Associates Yorkshire and Lincolnshire said: “Nazma is an exceptional member of our team and her nomination for these awards is well-deserved.

“She consistently goes above and beyond in her role, ensuring that the children and young people we support are well looked after and have all the resources they need.

“Nazma’s attention to detail and compassionate approach creates an atmosphere that fosters wellbeing and happiness among our children. We are proud to have her as part of our team.

“The entire Foster Care Associates community wishes Nazma the best of luck at the awards.”

The number of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children in care has grown by 34 per cent over the past year, driving the latest increase in the care population.

Nazma added: “It’s easy to forget that these children haven’t chosen this life. They’ve usually come from extremely challenging situations that many of us can’t even begin to imagine.

“As a nation we need to get behind these children and young people by listening to their stories and helping them achieve their dreams.”

With numbers continuing to rise significantly, more foster parents are needed in the UK to help care for these children and young people.

The awards ceremony is scheduled for 21st October 2023, at the ICC, Birmingham, and will be attended by individuals and organisations from the care sector, all dedicated to continually improving the lives and outcomes of children in care.

To inquire about becoming a foster parent with Foster Care Associates, or for more information, you can contact the team here: www.thefca.co.uk/regions/yorkshire/ or call 0800 023 4561.