18th July, 2023
A question we are sometimes asked is if you can take foster children on holiday. The answer, of course!
With school summer holidays upon us we wanted to catch up with some of our wonderful fostering families to talk about how they are giving their foster children experiences that they may never have had otherwise, and memories that will last a lifetime.
For one fostering family, taking their foster children abroad to Spain was important to them as the children had never been on holiday before.
However, before they ventured as far as Spain, they took a weekend trip in the UK. This tested the waters with how they would find it. They told us…
From there the family carefully planned the trip further afield to ensure the children would enjoy it to the max.
Routine: Having stability is so crucial for a child in care, so take favourite teddies, books for stories and perhaps even taking the same bath/shower gels to cause as little disruption as possible.
Build Excitement: This could be their first time on a plane, and an opportunity to create lifechanging memories. Take photos every moment you can for them to look back on. A great way of building excitement is by allowing them to choose some new clothes for the holiday, as well as their own and helping with packing their suitcases. Explain about the different currencies used and if you can show them some examples before you go.
Medicine: Be well stocked, Calpol, inhalers, anything you may need take with you rather than having to root out pharmacies abroad. Planning is key.
Passport: Apply for their passport leaving plenty of time, due to backlogs we’re heard of passports taking eight months to arrive. Explain to the children the importance of their passports, why they need them and their need to be kept safe when they are an adult.
Language: A great idea is to learn a few basic words in the native language together. This will give the children an appreciation for the wider world around them, and also be a thrill for them of being able to say something like ‘thank you’ in another language to use when they are out.
Safety: Last but certainly not least is safety. Take time when acclimatising to the new surroundings, especially things such as the swimming pool or balconies. Which they will be excited to see.
When it comes to making incredible memories during the holiday period for children, please do keep in mind that you don’t have to get on a plane to give them experiences that will enrich their lives and understanding of the world.
Planning a holiday closer to home can be just as fun and valuable. Like one of our other fostering families that we spoke to.
For this fostering family it’s about giving those life experiences which will stay with the children forever. Here are some of their past trips.
A Trip to London: Don’t worry about splashing the cash, staying in a Travelodge cuts down on costs and can keep you in the thick of it, which is exciting for the children. Just walking around and exploring the city is an adventure. The Natural History is a great landmark to take children, it’s fun and free. Take in the cultures of London and stop for a bite to eat.
Alton Towers: Most of us will have loved fun fairs as a kid, so somewhere like Alton Towers is a great place for the entire family to embrace their inner child. Alton Towers is a great day trip or overnight stay. Plan ahead to make the most of your time in the park. If you are in a position to stay the children will love the boldly themed rooms their.
The Beach: Getting away to enjoy the beach is always well received when you usually live in a suburban area. Staying in a caravan can be a novel experience if suitable for your child. Lazy days on the beach is a cheap and fun way to spend your time together. Throw in a cultural trip to a near by castle and you have a recipe for success.
The main thing with any of these suggestions is to have fun and lots of laughs together. Spark their curiosity, encourage them to ask questions and engage with the world around them.
Travel is such a good way of broadening a child’s mind, opening them up to new cultures and new experiences. It builds confidence and encourages their curiosity. All while giving them life experiences that they might never have had otherwise.
As one of our young people commented…
If you’ve got any questions or would like to find out more about fostering with Capstone, fill out the form below.
An experienced fostering advisor from your local area will then be in touch.