Emma’s fostering blog
’Thinking about Fostering’
When you’re thinking about fostering, there is much to consider you obviously want to make a difference; you certainly don’t want to fail.
It’s important to do your research as they all sound great on paper! Think carefully about the impact fostering will have on your own family/ wider family as your family dynamic and relationships will change. Talk to your children first as fostering can have a positive, negative or mixed impact on them as they play a big role in fostering.
May is Foster Care Fortnight this is the Fostering Network’s annual campaign to raise the profile of fostering and to show how foster care transforms lives. There will be many fostering events on, find out more about what fostering entails and there are foster carers on hand, so you will be able to hear what they say about the support, training and how the company works in general.
The role of a foster carer is to make that difference, but don’t expect too much at first, children can come with complex issues from neglect. You need to be prepared; they have been let down time and time again, and it takes time for them to build trust with you before they can begin the process of healing.
So how do you choose who to foster for- my advice is to check with Ofsted; read the inspection reports in your area, I would choose one local as it’s so important that you build relationships with other foster carers for support as the job is emotionally draining. Look at the rating and about the company, and I would especially look at how carers are supported.
When you have decided, check out the recruitment events with the local authority and the private sector, ask lots of questions, speak to foster carers, ask them what they think about the support, and if they feel valued and listened to.
Don’t go into it because you think you can make money out of it because you can’t and I would be very careful about anyone offering high amounts of money to care for a child; as my experience says be careful they may need far more than a foster home can offer. Most important- depending on the type of fostering, you may need to be in a child’s life for many years not just till they are 18, as often you are their support network through adulthood.
There is plenty of information around on fostering but I would recommend you look at the fostering network or if you have further questions for impartial advice you can contact Foster Line.
My thoughts are I never really knew how hard fostering was going to be emotionally or how challenging it would be. To watch a child grow into a confident and successful adult, knowing you made that difference is the best feeling you can experience.
Emma – A Blogging Foster Carer – I Love What I Do!