“Our Foster Care Story”
We love to hear real life stories from our Foster Carers, and we know you do, too! We’re always very grateful to them for showing us a sneak peak in to their lives as a family that fosters. Below is Kathleen and Stephen’s story, where they tell us just how rewarding it can be to look after children and young people.
Our Foster Care Story
“My partner and I have been fostering for the last 12 years.
When we first started we were given a great deal of training and 24-hour support to guide us though the complex decisions we had to make.
These decisions would vary from what’s best for the child, to safe guarding ourselves as a family.
Over the years we have been privileged to have the company of everything from a mother and baby (one day old) and children of all ages, right though to adult hood.
Outside of the fostering, we’ve both had a wide range of careers over the years, and we can honestly say fostering has definitely been one of the most challenging, but also most rewarding, things we have ever done.
At first you think it’s all about the children you’re trying to help, but you soon learn how much these little lost souls can also bring so much happiness in to your lives.
You will most definitely be tested along the way, there can be times when the police may have to be called, and even simply trying to guide them to make the right decisions can be exhausting.
If I could give one piece of advice it would be don’t think your going to change their lives as soon as they arrive in your home.
The children may not be used to having nice things. Even things like quietness, and stability, can be daunting for them.
Their lives up until meeting you have possibly been utter chaos.
Just taking things slow and providing them with the simple things like food, warmth and a safe environment at first is great, but even this will take time for them to get used to.
The more the days and weeks go by you will see little windows of them opening up and letting you in, a little at a time.
When this happens it is truly one of the best feelings you will experience in life. Just knowing that you, as a family, have been able to have a positive impact on these children lives in some way (whether it’s just for a short spell, or more long term).
At the moment we have an 8 year old boy who has been with us for 3 years.
Unfortunately he came to us in a very undeveloped and quite ‘feral’ state.
He was unable to talk, toilet, walk, and had very aggressive behaviours due to him being almost constantly terrified, and not being able to communicate how he felt.
Just trying to express on paper how much he’s come on is difficult.
Although he still has difficulties, he can now talk, dress himself, play, and even ride his bike without stabilizers (and ‘Yes’, I admit it did bring tears to my eyes).
He’s even joining scouts, and loves playing with his peers, computer games, watching You’ve-Been-Framed, and has the most amazing laugh.
He has now been placed with us long term and we’re really excited as a family to see him develop even more, as the years go by.
If you are thinking of taking the step be reassured that you will be given the tools and support to guide you though this amazing journey.”
A big thank you to Kathleen and Stephen for sharing their foster care story with us; it really does help to show just how important Foster Carers are in the lives of young people. We hope you enjoyed reading it!
Get in Touch
If you would like to get in touch with our fostering team to find out more about becoming a carer; please fill out the enquiry form below, and we will call you soon!