In one form or another, foster carer Viv has been working with children for almost all her life. From babysitting jobs in her teenage years, to nannying as an adult (as well as bringing up her own children), Viv always knew she wanted to work with children – and after some time working with underprivileged children in residential care and seeing the need for safe, and secure foster homes, she knew that fostering was the right step for her.
Viv and Dave spent a lot of time researching fostering services – they spoke to local authorities and independent agencies, went to open evenings and gathered all the information they could – but Viv still felt something was missing. And then she found out about Team Fostering. “We were really struck by Team’s values, especially as a not-for-profit agency. We knew that the children we’d help were likely to be older and have more complex needs, but that didn’t bother us, because we knew that Team Fostering were there to put the children first.” And now, years later, Viv acts as a carer representative in the North East and making sure that all the carers have a voice too.
“The support at Team is second-to-none. Anything they say they’ll do, they do – and if they can’t get back to you straight away, you know they’ll get back to you as soon as they can. And you can ring up anyone at Team – they don’t even have to be in the social work team, and you’ll always get the help you need. You feel like you’re being listened to, and it’s reassuring.”
Working with Team Fostering has proved to be a huge blessing for the young people Viv and Dave support too. “The annual holiday is exhausting for carers but it’s so worth it for the children to be able to spend time with other children like them.”
“It’s not been easy all of the time, but if you put in the time and the effort, it helps them develop and it helps you develop too. One of the boys has gone from a seven year old wearing armbands in the swimming pool to being nine years old, part of a swimming club and getting all of his badges – it’s the best thing ever to see him shine like that.”
If you’re considering fostering and would like to know more about becoming a carer, leave your details here or give us a call on 0800 292 2003 and we’ll be in touch.