real life

Barnardos say “Count yourself in” to foster a child

“We thought we were too unconventional to be foster parents with Barnados but we were wrong”

Barnardos Australia’s new campaign is challenging stereotypes and debunking common myths about foster carers.

Under the tagline ‘Count Yourself In’, the inspiring new campaign features a same-sex couple, a younger alternative couple with tattoos, dyed hair and piercings, a couple in motorcycle leathers, as well as an older couple and a single person.

The integrated campaign featuring print and multimedia aims to turn common-held misconceptions about foster carers on their head, conveying the message that foster carers come in all shapes and sizes

“We need a wide range of different sorts of carers for different sorts of children,” said Barnardos Australia CEO Louise Voigt.

With over 60 children and young people entering care every week across NSW alone, Barnardos are urgently seeking more foster carers who are able to open their homes and hearts to these vulnerable children.

All types of carers are needed, people who have the patience, resilience and understanding to support children and young people who may not have had the best start in life.

“We need carers from different ethnic backgrounds, single carers, married carers, partnered carers, gay carers, older carers who have valuable experience as well as younger carers who are very committed.

“I urge anyone thinking about becoming a foster carer to talk to us, I’m sure we can use your skills.”

Voigt said she hoped the campaign will reach out to people who have previously discounted themselves from being a foster carer.

“We hope this campaign sends the message that Barnardos Australia needs carers from different walks of life, and that you could be exactly who we need,” Voigt said.


“It’s important to us that people understand that it’s not about what you look like, your age or your marital status.”

“We didn’t think we could be foster parents with Barnados because we’re gay, but we were wrong”

“Foster caring is about having the right qualities to be able to provide a safe and stable home to a child in crisis.”

The radio spots re-iterate that Barnardos takes into account the qualities needed to be a great foster carer, rather than judging applicants on face value.

Listen here:

Rolling out over the next 8 weeks in NSW and ACT, the campaign features outdoor (bus, petrol pump and shopping centre) advertising as well as radio, online and print.

Don’t count yourself out. You could be exactly who we need.

Count yourself in.

Call us today on 1800 663 441 or

To compliment the campaign, Barnardos Australia has also launched a supporting website and will release new videos each week of the campaign featuring interviews with real foster carers.

Hear their stories.

“I thought I couldn’t be a foster carer with Barnados because I’m single but I was wrong”

Meet Christine – she’s single and providing long term foster care to a young teenager who she wouldn’t trade for the world

Meet Simon and Wally – a couple who’s permanent foster care journey led to adoption of their son

Meet Chris and Hilary – a couple with grown children, who now foster long term and thrive on having lots of youthful energy in the house again

Meet Kylie and Emma (coming soon) – a couple with a young son who are now providing temporary crisis care for a newborn

Meet Regan and Lindsay (coming soon) – a young couple with 2 sons providing short term care explain how much they get out of fostering as a family

Watch here:

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