This is Fostering: What does fostering mean to our carers?

This is Fostering: What does fostering mean to our carers?

15 May 2020

Foster Care Fortnight takes place every year as a celebration of the extremely valuable contributions that everyone involved in the fostering sector makes. From 11 to 24 May this year, we’re joining with our fellow fostering organisations to make a noise about our carers, our staff and the young people that keep pushing us all onwards to support and develop their futures. This year’s theme is #ThisIsFostering, which aims to give a fully rounded view of the foster care experience.

Our foster carers are a vitally important part of everything we do – without their hard work, patience, compassion and resilience, we wouldn’t be able to provide safe and stable homes for many of the vulnerable young people we work with. We work collaboratively with our foster carers to ensure they have the training, the support, and the advice they need to provide the best possible outcomes for our Looked After children.

But what does fostering mean to our foster carers? It’s often challenging, but also can be the most rewarding thing that our foster carers do. We asked some of our brilliant carers to discuss, in their own words, their honest view of the work they do.

Kirsty and Philip explain: ‘It’s hard at the moment with COVID-19; it’s been our biggest challenge.  It's been difficult trying to keep the children into a routine at times, while we also have to deal with additional needs made more difficult during lock down. Team Fostering have been with us during every day of this and have supported every decision we've made.”

“Our supervising social worker has been a constant throughout the placement, always being there to support us whenever we've needed it, more often than not outside of hours. “

There’s also a lot to be learned from fostering, as Lindsay and Barry explain “Time does heal, although not fully, but you can make changes, simple but important ones that will have a positive impact on children’s lives. We now have a young man that is on Staying Put whom has made huge progress and we never expected it.  He is now at college full time, in his second year and doing brilliantly. “

They continue, “Watching a child blossom and see that they are worthy, being able to observe their self-esteem and self-worth build up, to make decisions for themselves, without us having to make decisions for them is one of the best things we see. They learn that they do deserve to be loved and cared for and well nurtured. ‘

Karl and Maria echo this, “There’s not just one best moment in fostering, but far too many to mention. Seeing the children accomplish simple things from learning to ride bikes, swim and speak fluent English to name a few. Definitely seeing the children happy makes it worthwhile.’

Team Fostering are always looking for new foster carers, especially now while many children are stuck in difficult home situations during lockdown – if you’re interested in making a difference to a young person’s life, get in touch to take the first step on your fostering journey.

If you’re considering becoming a foster carer, you can contact us in the following ways: