I am asked quite often why I came into Fostering. To be honest I never intended to but when I met my wife she was already going through the training. So I joined her on the training which was with a London local authority.
The training was really good and the trainers were excellent, making the whole process really fun and educational. We finally got through panel and started our joint Fostering career.
We had all sorts of placements and, because of the poor support from the local authority, we learnt to do a lot of things off of our own backs. We went through all the various emotions involved with fostering, good and bad, but we enjoyed it.
After a couple of years we were approached by an agency to foster for them. We were puzzled how the agency knew about us but then we found that the people who had trained us were now also working for the agency. The difference in the support we received was amazing.
Foster Care Blog.
We were allocated a Linkworker who was available to us 24/7. The whole set up was professional and the financial aspect was a lot better than the local authority. During our time as joint carers we sampled the whole range of fostering tasks and looked after all age groups and sibling groups of up to 4.
We cared for all races, religions and from all different backgrounds. It was not easy, we had to deal with all sorts from uncooperative parents threatening violence to children running away and, of course the occasional allegation. We always knew when an allegation was coming, the parent’s behaviour and demeanour pointed to it.
Maybe something had been decided that they parent(s) didn’t agree with or, once, a parent didn’t like the brand of trainers we had bought their child and made a complaint that we were neglecting the child. So we carried on over many years until, unfortunately, our marriage broke up.
I decided to carry on fostering while she didn’t want to. I had to jump through a few hoops to carry on as my background had changed but I was soon back up and running and haven’t looked back since. Obviously, my placements are all male but that isn’t really an issue. I still enjoy it and couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
James (name changed) had training on Tuesday night so I took him down and ended up chatting with other parents so didn’t bother going home. We heard a horrible scream of pain and someone shouting to call an ambulance.
I feared the worst but saw James standing over the boy who was obviously in a lot of pain and distress. The ambulance took 25 minutes to arrive and the boy was moved it was plain to see that he had broken his ankle as his foot was at an unusual angle.
He was carted off to hospital, with his Dad, and the training was abandoned immediately as some of the boys, including James, were shook up by what had happened. The coaches told us the arrangements for the game on Saturday and off we went.
James was a bit quiet in the car but I explained that these things happen and it’s a part of playing sport. The injured lad would be back playing soon.
Fosterman – A Simply Fostering Blogging Foster Carer.