So What Do Foster Carers Do?
In a very small nutshell foster carers are ordinary people who open up their heart and their home to vulnerable young people who need alternative family care.
Any child separated from their families will feel confused, anxious and distressed. Foster carers provide a welcoming, loving, supportive and secure home environment where young people feel valued and respected and part of the family.
Some foster parents provide short term care while other young people need a home for a longer period. Foster carers provide care for children and young people for periods from 1 night up to 18 years depending on their availability and circumstances.
Foster Carer Tasks
The day-to-day tasks carried out by each carer is different. It will depend on the children or young people they are looking after and the plans for the child. But being a foster carer involves more than just looking after a child. Foster carers are expected to do all they can to support children and young people in every aspect of their life: their education, their health and their social wellbeing.
To promote and protect the physical and mental health of children and young people, foster parents provide good food, warm clothes and a clean and safe home environment. This may be arranging for regular dental and eye tests or medical attention for a particular person so they can express their feelings. They also have to talk to social workers about any concerns and press for any extra services the child needs and help children and young people achieve a great education.
They need to act as a vital source of support in all these areas; working in partnership with other professionals such as therapists, teachers or doctors to help the child to understand their situation, achieve their potential and grow into responsible adults.
Every child is unique and their situation is different. But, where possible, foster carers will be in contact with birth families and extended family members to maintain positive relationships.
Foster carers take a close interest in the lives of the young people in their care and help children and young people feel valued, respected and listened to as individuals. They set boundaries to help children and young people behave appropriately and communicate positively. In this way, children and young people grow and mature into independent, responsible adults.
Working as Part of a Team
Foster carers are not alone in their role. As well as working as part of a team of professionals to provide the best care for their foster child(ren), foster carers themselves receive a high level of support and training to fully equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to take on even the most challenging of foster children!
Zoe O’Donohoe, Marketing and Business Development Manger, highlights that “Lorimer recognise the hard work that our foster carers do on a daily basis and that such professionalism does not come overnight. Therefore, we put our foster carers at the heart of our service and ensure that they are equipped to provide the best possible care to the young people, from ongoing training, intensive support and a fantastic financial package. They never have to feel that they are alone in this journey as Lorimer are there to guide them through every step of the way!”.
For more information about becoming a foster carer with Lorimer Fostering please submit your details on the form above and we will contact you back or alternatively you can contact us on (freephone) 0800 038 7799.