I used to be a foster carer before I became a social worker with Capstone Foster Care.
In my early thirties I looked after two teenage boys from the ages of 13 up until they became adults. I am still very much involved in their lives as they are now part of my family. The eldest had some difficult times as a teenager and young adult, and even though this caused me some worry, I never regretted caring for him, not even for 5 mins.
He now has a family of his own and works very hard to support them, and is a fantastic loving and playful dad. I like to think he has learnt from me about having boundaries and routines and also giving the children lots of nurture and understanding. I have been greatly honoured to be asked to be their nanna and they are a joy to look after.
His younger brother moved in with me as well from the age of 15 and stayed up until he was 20. I have supported him in cultivating a strong relationship with his dad, who he had not seen from being a baby. His dad gave him the opportunity of full time work and he has now gone on to have a very well paid job and recently got married to his partner of 7 years. They chose to have a very small intimate wedding and I was privileged to be one of the five guests.
They are both very appreciative for all I have down for them, and express this more now being in their thirties which is nice. However I always like to point out how much they have given me; all the years of fun, love and laughter. I am very proud of them both, and myself, and I view being a foster carer as the best and most rewarding thing I have ever done for myself as well as for them.
These experiences have been useful in my role as supervising social worker supporting foster carers.
Elaine, Social Worker