An independent fostering agency has expanded into a new office in Darlington as part of efforts to change the lives of more local children in need.

Unity Foster Care says its move to a new home at Business Central plays an important role in raising the visibility of the organisation and the urgent need for new foster carers to come forward.

Founded in 2015 in Leeds, the agency has already helped to bring together 391 children, young people and parents in Yorkshire and Tees Valley. Now, Digital Marketing Manager Amy Styran says the time is right to raise the profile of their crucial work.

She said: “There’s an ongoing need to attract new people to the role but there are many myths and misconceptions about who can and can’t become a foster carer. We’re passionate about breaking down those barriers.

“Our move to the heart of the community at Business Central opens up so many new opportunities for us to raise awareness of the benefits and opportunities involved so more brilliant matches can be found for children and carers.

“Opening your home to a child can mean giving that child a chance at life that they might otherwise never have had. There are very few roles you can do that will give you the same level of reward.”

Unity Foster Care works to match foster carers with children in care ranging in age from new-born to 17. Its team of 25 features admin and marketing staff through to support and social workers who work closely with families and Local Authorities throughout the fostering relationship.

The Business Central office provides the team with a new Northern base when working with families face-to-face and forms part of the company’s hybrid working model.

Amy added: “The most important thing to us is to make sure our families and our team are happy. The move to Business Central plays an important role in that commitment.

“It provides a warm, welcoming, creative and cosy environment that feels incredibly positive. That’s exactly what we want when having such important interactions with families who are changing lives.”