Awesome Reasons for fostering
I am a foster carer. Most things have their pros and cons I know, but fostering is one of those things I believe which has overwhelmingly more ‘fors’ than ‘against’ and I am proud to say I foster and would promote this as a viable ‘to do’ for most people. Personally, there are so many reasons why I foster and so in this post, I am going to share 7 with you. Ironically my first five reasons for fostering have to do with the actual categories on my blog.
- Give Back – I have been privileged to be born in a good home where I felt loved and all my basic needs were met. For whatever reason, (there are many!) some kids are not so privileged, and so I think it behoves the rest of us who are able, to do something to give back to those who are less fortunate. So the first reason I foster is so that I can give back.
- Laugh more – OMG! Foster kids are funny! I don’t know what it is about them but they just seem to exude humour. I mean, they come out with the funniest things, and you know me, I love a laugh. My foster daughter meets up with her brothers for contact which I supervise. OMG just thinking about it now I am chuckling, they are so funny!
- Eat healthier – some children are fostered because they suffered severe neglect in their birth homes. Severe neglect means that no attention was even given to what the kids ate or even whether or not they ate. I pride myself on being a good cook and I have a wealth of knowledge about healthy eating (I know I don’t always practice what I do know). In my role as a foster parent, I help the children in my care to improve their diets which then means they have a better shot at so much more of their future than they would have had they remained at home.
- Recharge your battery – for some fostered children, it would seem like they, and their parents were at the end of their tether! Some are just stuck in a rut and if they remained at home, they might never get unstuck!. So I am proud to know that I help some of these kids to recharge their batteries and have another go at life! If they can get to achieve their full potential by being in care especially if they didn’t stand a chance of this outside of the care system, then I think this is an awesome opportunity that should be grasped.
- Work smarter – Some kids have the potential to do really well. Somehow, some things in their background make it not so conducive for them to excel. In their birth homes, some are not encouraged to do homework, read, or even engage in stimulating sensible conversations. In other words, their home environment holds them back. With my foster daughter, I try to make things so that she has every opportunity available and affordable to succeed. Once she came into my care, I ensured that she had additional support with her education as her school attendance prior to this was very poor. I encouraged her to do her best at everything she tried and praised and rewarded her achievements. She now has good study habits and is doing really well in school because I have instilled in her this ‘work smarter’ attitude.
- That feel-good feeling – Who doesn’t like feeling good? No one! I get a good feeling, a buzz from hearing compliments and references made about children I have fostered. It just feels good. If someone comes to me and says: ‘I saw so and so (a child I have fostered) and they are doing really well’, my face lights up and I feel good. Just knowing that you have assisted a child or young person to develop, mature and progress feels good! Today, my long term foster daughter is in 6th form and working towards her dreams of becoming a paramedic. That definitely makes me feel proud.
- It pays – money is not all and to be honest, I don’t think I am at break-even point yet. However, getting paid helps. So far I have fostered almost a dozen children ranging from days old to 15 years old. I have tried to make things special for all of them. Of course, this means paying for some of the things I provide money can’t buy but for some things, only money can suffice. For my full-time foster child, I take her on all holidays with us as a family is it overseas or nationally. There is, of course, some repayment by the local authority but it never covers what I have to fork out upfront. But I’m not complaining. I love what I do and would have it no other way. I foster because I want to!
So there you go. I know some don’t think it is something they could do but if you can give it a prayerful thought please do. You never know the impact you can and might make in a young person’s life. I also think I know enough horror stories about foster carers who have been absolutely horrible human beings and I abhor that, believe me, but I’d say if you can just do it! Give it a thought, and deciding to foster might be your good deed today!
Do let us know if you have what it takes to foster. You never know how much good you are doing to the world by giving kids a second shot at life.
Have a good week ahead.