SUNDERLAND HAS GIVEN ITS ANNUAL THANK YOU to foster carers on behalf of the hundreds of young people they have provided with a family home.
More than 30 of the city’s longest serving foster carers were invited to a presentation ceremony at The Quayside Exchange.
They received their awards and the city’s thanks from the Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Barry Curran who said: “As Mayor of Sunderland it gives me great pleasure and pride to be able to formally thank you and congratulate you for everything you do.”
At the ceremony compered by Sun FM’s breakfast show presenters Simon Grundy and Danni Moore, the Mayor presented awards to carers for service ranging from five to 30 years.
The Mayor of Sunderland also presented the Celia Parnell Award for 2014 to Julie and Paul Adamson.
This is an annual memorial award, given to someone who has made an outstanding contribution to the welfare of looked after children
Celia Parnell was a former chair of the fostering and adoption panel and the award was created in her memory at the request of her family.
Julie and Paul have been foster carers for 11 years, caring for 25 children and providing six permanent placements.
Currently the couple live with three teenagers who they permanently foster, two young men whom they previously fostered and their youngest son, their two older sons are also regular visitors to the family home.
Over the years Julie and Paul have provided all types of fostering placements but what they have become best known for is taking in children whose previous placements have broken down are facing challenges socially and at school.
Portfolio Holder to Children’s Services, Councillor Pat Smith said: “What makes people like Paul and Julie so special is that they are totally focussed on the needs of the children and young people that they care for, and what they can do to make a real positive difference for them.
“Within weeks of placing a child in their care, who perhaps has problems at school or with making friends, you’ll see that same child becoming more self-confident and making an effort in class and at home and becoming much happier and settled in the process.
“Julie and Paul are an inspiration to all of the professionals who work with them and an absolute blessing to the children who have been lucky enough to be placed with them.”
On receiving the Celia Parnell Award, Julie said: “We are so grateful to have been nominated and humble to have received this award. A big thank you to all professionals for their support and guidance over the years.
“A special thank you to Children’s Services for your continuing support. Finally a massive thank you to our family and friends who have supported us over challenging times and still keep believing like we do.”
For anyone interested in becoming a foster carer, please visit