SVT Nyheter Öst has sent out a survey to all municipalities in Östergötland and Gotland. Of the ten respondents, almost all of them queue children in foster care. The picture is general throughout Sweden: there is a shortage of family homes.
"It's very serious. These are children where it has been assessed that they need to live elsewhere and they do not get the placement that they need. At best, they are placed in an on-call home waiting to arrive at a family home. Then they are at least protected during that time, says Niina Stenander, chairman of the interest association Faco, the central organization of family care.
Collaboration is important
She believes there are several reasons why it is difficult to get hold of family homes. Among other things, she believes that the media usually highlights the cases where placements have not turned out well. At the same time, she also believes that support and cooperation from the municipalities is crucial.
"It's sometimes very tough and then you need to help each other. It is important that the municipality has a good collaboration, supports with resources and ability when it is toughest. It's good when you can be several around a child who feels bad and that the children get family homes that can cope and stay," she says.
SVT Nyheter Öst has talked to several people who have experience of acting as a family home. One woman says that many times the children are taken into care too late. It has often been a long time and the children can be severely traumatized once they get to a placement. Something that Niina Stenander also testifies to.
"We see that the children who are placed feel worse than they did before.
Why is that?
- I don't know.