You Can Foster creative writing competition

An inspirational new creative writing competition has been launched in Wakefield as part of the regional You Can Foster campaign

The inspiring stories competition aims to encourage children in foster care and fostering families from the North of England to tell their stories. It is hoped this will encourage a new generation of adults to sign up as foster carers.

The entries will be across five age categories and will be judged by a prestigious panel of children’s authors and poets. The panel includes; children’s author and screenwriter Frank Cottrell-Boyce, poet Tony Walsh, children’s authors Cathy Cassidy, Livi Michael and Dan Worsley.

Stories submitted can be a personal account of a fostering experience or an inspirational tale that needs to be told. Entries can be fiction, non-fiction, written or even drawn so that all ages can engage with the competition. The competition is open to children and young people up to the age of 25, who are, or have been, in foster care, as well as birth children of foster carers

There will be five winners from varying age categories who will each have their stories published online, promoted across the North West and Yorkshire, and brought to life with a bespoke front-cover design.

It’s hoped that the stories will reveal the real sense of value and motivation that foster carers can instil in the young people and help shape their lives.

Children’s author Frank Cottrell-Boyce says: “Stories are how we make sense of our lives.  The only way we can hope to understand another person is by listening to their story.  The only way we can hope to understand ourselves is by finding someone who will listen to our story.  When we hear other people’s stories we discover we are not alone in our troubles.  And we learn that there are solutions to our problems.

“As G K Chesterton said - we don’t read fairy stories to learn that dragons are real.  We read them to learn that dragons can be defeated.”

Children and young people can visit the You can Foster website to find out more and submit their stories which should be no longer than 800 words.

The deadline for entries is 5pm, Friday 17 November 2017

The You Can Foster campaign has brought together a number of local authorities and is highlighting the need for more foster carers.