The Examiner SEPTEMBER 10 2018 – 6:58PM – Matt Dennien
MOO-VEMENT: Trudi Youl, Mel Ferrier, and Elanor Kramer, with Ashgrove Cheese’s Roy Thomas. Picture: Phillip Biggs
A milk company and social service organisation might not have the most obvious connection, but two prominent groups are using theirs to push an important message.
Life Without Barriers and Ashgrove Cheese have joined forces this week to ask Tasmanians to consider becoming foster carers.
Over 10,000 neck tags will appear on Ashgrove milk bottles this week, in super markets and cafes across the state.
They’re also asking others to join the “moo-vement”.
This year marks the second time the groups have worked together on the campaign, and this time they have even more help spreading the word.
Over 20 cafes statewide have also come on-board to run posters and flyers in their stores, along with Life Without Barriers “Become a Foster Carer” coffee cups.
Melinda Ferrier, the northern Tasmania regional manager at Life Without Borders, said “it’s very exciting.”
“They’re helping us to raise the awareness of the need for foster carers.”
Roy Thomas, Tasmanian milk sales and distribution manager at Ashgrove Cheese said the week was their major community campaign and a chance to highlight an issue that often slips from sight.
The campaign comes as part of Foster and Kinship Care Week taking place from September 9 to 15.
The week is a national initiative to celebrate the work of foster, kinship, and relative carers – and runs every year in September.
Ms Ferrier said the main aim was really to encourage others to lend a hand.
A boost in inquires as a result of the campaign would be great for Life Without Barriers, she added.
“We hope that we inspire people who have been thinking about fostering to give us a call.”
In May, data provided by advocacy body Foster Carers Kinship Association Tasmania showed Northern Tasmania had the least number of active and authorised foster carers in the state.
Foster Carers Kinship Association Tasmania chief executive Kim Backhouse said in May that though carer numbers were declining, there was a general increase across Tasmania – and the country – of children entering the foster care system.