How to Foster
Welcome Foster Care is always looking for more fine foster carers. Beyond the training and the information about fostering, there are some essential components of the fostering experience. If you have ever wondered, could you foster or what is it really like being a foster parent, here is a little insight into the type of personality that helps with the challenges of being a foster parent.
You need patience
As a foster parent, you need to have a great deal of patience. You will be caring for a child who has experienced trauma. While you know that your home is warm and cosy, safe and caring, the child only knows that this is a strange new place and he or she might not feel like they really belong in your home.
It depends on the situation, but often the child’s future is unclear. Will the child be with you for a long time? Or is this a temporary placement while the local authorities attempt to reconcile the situation that caused the child to be removed from their birth home. Imagine how confusing this can be for a young person.
Driven by fear and insecurity, the child’s behaviour may be difficult. Your patience and ability to maintain a tranquil and happy home will go a long way toward helping them feel safe and loved.
You need good health
Your age is not a factor, other than you should be over 21. Older foster parents are welcome. Regardless of your age, you must be in good health so that you are able to provide consistent and constant care to the child. Fostering calls for your presence when the child needs you. If you have health issues that can take you out of commission frequently or for any length of time, it can be an impossible situation.
You must have time
A need for your services can occur at any time. As well, looking after a child in care means that you must be available to meet with teachers, your social worker, other members of the foster network, and health professionals as needed. While you have the freedom of being your own boss, you are on call 24/7. Children and young people in care can have special needs, special fears, and an urgent need to know that you are always available to meet their needs.
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You must be compassionate
Angry and distressed children can lash out at the very people who are trying to help them. Your compassion can help you see past their distress to the frightened or damaged child within. Different families respond in different ways to certain situations. Your home is not the first home the child has lived in and they may have had negative experiences with their birth family.
They may have been in other foster homes before being placed with you. This is bound to generate a sense of insecurity. Exuding a kind, compassionate nature, alleviates any feeling that you are being judgemental about their behaviour and allows them to begin to feel at home with you, and feel that they can trust you.
To learn more about how to become part of the Welcome team, please get in touch – call us on 020 3397 3332 or fill in our form.