Fathers’ Day rewards “great dads”

Pat Albon is honoured to win at Central Bedfordshire Council's Great Dad awards PNL-160622-142017001

Pat Albon is honoured to win at Central Bedfordshire Council's Great Dad awards PNL-160622-142017001

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A competition to find “great dads” in time for Fathers’ Day has revealed Bedfordshire has some awesome foster dads.

Pat Albon, from north Bedford, was honoured to be among the winners of a Central Bedfordshire Council initiative to celebrate the important role that dads and male carers (stepdads, foster parents, older brothers, uncles or grandfathers) play in children’s lives.

Pat, who has been fostering for more than 25 years, said: “I don’t see myself as great, just an ordinary dad trying to do the best for the children we have the privilege to care for; and, hopefully, give them the loving and stable environment they need during what is often a time of uncertainty.

“All the looked-after children in our care are accepted as members of our family whilst they are with us, including by our own children, and therefore are treated as such.”

He added: “Recognising that many children come from families where either there is no male parent or that there may have been inappropriate behaviour by a male, I tend to take a back seat at the time of placement.

“I will generally be around but allow the children to get used to my presence without being directly involved until I am sure that I do not seem a threat to the child.”

The competition was run to coincide with Father’s Day on Sunday (June 19).

People were encouraged to nominate their great dads for the competition as a way of saying thank you.

Other winners included foster carers Simon Ellis, from Leighton Buzzard and Dave Foster from Luton.

All three have won family tickets to watch Milton Keynes Dons play next season.

A council spokesman said: “If that has inspired you to find out more about fostering in Central Bedfordshire, visit www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/children/adoption-fostering/foster.aspx”