Hi, I’m T. I am 18 and I have been in care for the last 4 years, recently moving into semi-independent living in Rotherham, just before my 18th birthday.
This is my story.
Coming into care was scary, we all have different reasons for being a looked-after child, but it is for the best if our circumstances at home aren’t great or we are at risk of harm. Our first steps into our new home for a few months or years are scary, we don’t expect it to be easy and it isn’t, but we eventually overcome that feeling thanks to the support we get. I personally think that the hardest part is leaving care and leaving the home we spent most of our time in, Christmas, bonfire night, Halloween and many more memories we make. We make a bond with our foster carers that is unbreakable at times, but sometimes they aren’t as strong due to reasons that are from both sides.
Our first thoughts are, ‘are we going to have someone to talk to?’ The answer to that daunting question is yes you do get someone to talk to, you get a decent amount of support, there is always support and a person that you’re able to talk to when you need to. Staff at Team Fostering are only a phone call away, your foster carers are only downstairs. Teachers at your sometimes new school are always very supportive of your move to your new home, and maybe your parents if you still have contact.
My experience of being in foster care is that it is scary, the problems from your birth home may follow you to your new home, but there is always a solution and there is always help if you need it and support. In my time at my previous foster carer’s home I experienced some problems, for example my foster mother became critically ill and she was in a coma, but she had numerous operations that in the end saved her life☺️YAY! I was supported and helped to cope with these problems, everyone at Team Fostering made sure I was safe and wasn’t worrying about anything!
At Team Fostering they held so many activities for children to keep them happy. There were activities such as Diggerland, Drayton Manor, Lightwater Valley, laser tag, swimming, ice skating, and many others. We even have a residential that kids are able to go on to learn life skills, making our own food, having our own room with responsibly to keep it clean, different activities throughout the weekend. At all of these activities there are new children to talk to, interact with and bond with! They are all so sweet and polite and they all make you feel wanted and welcomed!
Leaving care was scary but we all have to do it one day! The feeling of responsibility can be horrible but at the same time it sounds great! It’s hard living on your own, bills, budgeting so we have enough money to sort out our bills and food. But, the thought of finding my own place and starting my life and children is an amazing thought and feeling and I love thinking about it! J
My journey towards my independence started at supported housing in Rotherham. Here I am provided with a key worker, she supports me with budgeting (I’m not very good at this), attending appointments, cooking, workshops and many other things. There are staff there 24/7 for support and to make sure every child and young adult is safe and feels safe. There are also numerous other accommodations that you can choose from once you leave or are ready to leave care.
Personally I LOVE TEAM FOSTERING! Being a care kid has changed my life and changed my views on everything in life!