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Having a parent that believes in you is essential to children’s happiness, finds Barnardo’s

Release Date: 23 Jan 2017

Love (88 per cent), listen (82 per cent), support (75 per cent) and trust (74 per cent) are things children say parents, guardians and carers should do in order for them to have a happy childhood, a new survey by Barnardo’s has found.

The poll of over 1,000 British children aged eight to fifteen (1) also reveals that nearly 80 per cent (79%) said having a parent or guardian that encourages or believes in them is important for a positive future when they are adults.

When asked about memories that are special to them, almost two thirds (61 per cent) said spending quality time with their parents or guardians, and 33 per cent said a parent or guardian reading a bed time story to them.

This week, during Barnardo’s Fostering and Adoption Week (23 – 29 January 2017), the leading children’s charity is appealing to people who are loving and supportive to consider fostering to make a difference to a child’s life.

There is currently a shortfall of around 9,000 foster carers across the UK (2).

Javed Khan, Barnardo’s Chief Executive, said:

This survey shows the fundamental role parents, guardians and carers play in a child’s life. Fostering can transform a child’s life and give them the childhood they so desperately deserve.

The theme of this year’s Fostering and Adoption Week 2017 is ‘When you believe in me’. To ensure children’s voices are heard throughout the UK, Barnardo’s will be asking 70,440 people (3), which represents the number of children currently in care in England, over the next year to nominate the person that believed in them.

Barnardo’s celebrity supporters Fay Ripley, Lydia Bright and Jono Lancaster are backing the charity’s Fostering and Adoption Week 2017.

There is currently a shortage of foster carers across the UK, with particular need for carers who can provide safe, stable homes for teenagers, children with challenging behaviours and sibling groups.

To find out more information about fostering with Barnardo’s, please visit or call us on 0800 0277 280.


Notes to editors

Press release applies to GB – England, Wales and Scotland ONLY

(1)All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 1,186 GB children and young people aged 8-15. Fieldwork was undertaken between 9 – 12 December 2016. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB children aged 8 to 15.

(2)Fostering Network 2016/2017 -

(3)There are currently 70,440 children in the care of local authorities in England on 31st March 2016, compared to 69,540 in 2015 (Statistics from the Department for Education - )

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