What can I say? It was lovely to be welcomed back by Plymouth Argyle Football Club as part of our ongoing recruitment of Plymouth City Council Foster Carers. It was most certainly a very cold day but the weather stayed dry and Plymouth Argyle Football Club supported our new campaign with the help of two of their home-grown football players.
Michael Cooper and Adam Randell kindly offered to support this campaign. It is clear why both players are well respected within their team and by their fans. Councillor Jemima Laing was present during the day, as she is always on hand to support Foster for Plymouth and our endeavours to attract more people to become foster carers for the local authority. Jemima said “It’s wonderful to see young men like Adam and Michael supporting the city’s efforts to recruit more foster carers for Plymouth. We need more incredible people to consider this extremely rewarding role, please consider making that first step and talk to the Foster for Plymouth team.”
Plymouth Argyle Football Club have been supporting Plymouth City Council’s Fostering Service for over 2 years now so it really was special to be welcomed back. In finding out more about the 2 players supporting our campaign Plymouth Argyle Football Club shared the following about both players.
“Young goalkeeper Michael Cooper is a product of the Argyle Academy. He made his debut at just 17 years of age, coming on for the injured Kyle Letheren in a 1-1 draw against Blackburn Rovers in 2017.
Gaining experience in Papa Johns Trophy fixtures while still a teenager, Cooper was selected as Argyle’s first-choice goalkeeper at the start of the 2020/21 season, and was a league ever-present for that and the following season.
With seemingly unlimited potential, Cooper impressed all with his displays, earning the title of Young Player of the Year in his first full season, and winning the senior version of the award in 2021/22. He was also named in the Sky Bet League One team of the division for the season.”
“In respect of Adam Randell, Plymouth Argyle Football Club report he is one of the recent success stories of the Argyle Academy. Adam came through the ranks at Home Park, making a handful of appearances in cup competitions and occasionally as substitute in the EFL whilst a teenager.
The 2020/21 season, which Randell spent on loan at Torquay, was arguably the making of the Plymouth-born midfielder, as he played 45 times for the Gulls, who came very close to being promoted from the Vanarama National League.
The boy had become a man, and when he returned to Home Park, having signed a new contract, his involvement in the first team steadily increased. He played 31 times during the 2021/22 season, including eight league starts, and scored his first Argyle goal with a stunning free-kick at Sheffield Wednesday.
In 2022/23, Randell has become a fixture in the side, and has added to his goal tally with a series of outside-the-box efforts, as well as impressing with his dazzling range of passing.”
The day was not only supported by these two amazing football players but also by some foster carers and cabinet members. Gary is one of our foster carers and he reported “The event itself was amazing. PAFC are fully behind Fostering for Plymouth. It was truly inspiring to have two home-grown players give their time to our campaign to bring awareness to fostering in Plymouth. The recruitment campaign has been steadily growing since covid. It is such an amazing rewarding experience becoming a foster carer.”
We were also supported by foster carer Pam Dale who fosters teenagers. She is an integral part of our fostering family and we really value her contribution. Pam supports all our recruitment events and will always offer a friendly phone call to anyone wishes to pursue fostering and if they just want some more information but from a Foster Carer.
At present there remains a regional and national shortage of foster carers. We fully understand the commitment people make when they come forward to become foster carers. We just hope that people will see this and consider if this is something they could do. Being a foster carer is a rewarding experience and the children of Plymouth need more local carers to come back.
Councillor Dylan Tippet said “Supporting our city’s young people is one of the most valuable things someone could do. As a LGBT+ man, I know that not every young person gets to have a loving and supportive home. You could give a young person that home that they deserve, do contact the Foster for Plymouth team to get started on that journey”.
One of the members of our service was involved in this recruitment campaign for the first time and Sherree reported “What a magical event to go behind the scenes of Plymouth Argyle and meet two young footballers, who might be even more famous one day. They wanted to take part in our recruitment event to help us recruit foster carers for Plymouth City Council. I ensured that I got a photograph of Adam Randell, central mid field and Mike Cooper goalie, both players keeping Argyle at the top of the league for so many months. We were in the company of the great and the good. Two professional football players and two Plymouth City councillors helping us with the day, as well as Gary Harris, one of Plymouth’s foster carers who helps coach the young people, so that we are providing our own home grown young people. It made me proud to be a Plymouthian”.
At Foster for Plymouth we know that without YOU the children of Plymouth may not be able to grow up in their local community. At Foster for Plymouth we welcome all carers to come forward and make that first step and call us. At Foster for Plymouth you will become part of our fostering family and be supported to care for some of the most vulnerable children and young people in Plymouth.
Keep a look out for the video that has been filmed by Michael and Adam at Plymouth Argyle Football Club and make contact and start your fostering journey now.
Pick up the phone and call us today 01752 308762 or fill in our website form to start your fostering journey with us.