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Growing Together

7th February, 2022

This year’s Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week is focussed on growing together and considering how we help others to grow. We spoke with Senior Practitioner, Carole Bell about how foster children and their carers grow together and also what she thinks helps children and young people in foster care grow.

“The main thing that keeps a child part of a foster family and enables them to grow together has to be the commitment from our foster carers. Being a foster carer is not always easy and I am struck daily by the dedication that our foster carers give to the children in their care.

When a placement is not working out, it’s really tough on everyone. Some of the foster children have been to a number of placements that haven’t worked out previously and so naturally feel distrustful.

The constant for all of the children that I can think of over the years, who have gone on to be successful (whatever that may mean for each individual), is that they have had foster carers who have stuck by them, are consistent, who don’t give up and who never stopped encouraging them. These are the things within a fostering family that help a child to feel safe, secure and able to grow. Foster carers also dedicate lots of time to learning and different ways to help the children in their care, so growing together is very apt for a foster child and their carers.

Consistency is incredibly important in other ways too for a child/young person. Having a social worker that gets to know them well and builds a solid relationship with them helps so much. As an independent fostering agency, it’s great to be able to give the children that consistency as it makes the world of difference to them. Some young people I have helped over the years still keep in contact with me now. As a social worker, giving your time when people need you is vital as is following through with actions that you have promised.”

Could you give time and commitment to “grow together” with a child/young person in need of a foster home? We’d love to hear from you. Our foster carers have 24/7 support 365 days a year with dedicated social workers like Carole.  Don’t hesitate to get in touch for an informal chat about becoming a foster carer to help children in your area.

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