Georgie and Robin have been together or over 40 years, have 5 children and 22 grandchildren and this provided them with the foundation to foster and change children’s lives through emergency placements.
I’ve worked in the care sector in a number of different roles and have previously worked with people with disabilities in the community. Robin continues to work as a nurse, even now.
We always had an open house in our village, we took care of local children who needed help, our children would bring home their friends who needed help on the premise that ‘mum and dad would fix it’, we ran a local youth group and we even had our home registered as a safe house for the local police to use to house people who needed to security. Caring came naturally to us and during our careers we were aware of all children that still needed help.
Becoming foster parents just seemed like a next step for us once our children left home. Robin had himself been fostered after a challenging time and he found his experience of fostering very positive. He continued to keep in touch with his foster parents even after leaving the family home.
We Googled ‘Christian fostering agency’ and up popped Capstone Foster Care in the Google listings. We are both Christians and while we were looking for an agency with the same values us, we were and are still open to helping children from all faiths. Robin had had Asian ‘foster brothers’ when he was young, so we were aware of the need for carers to be open to different placements.
We had found the agency who had the same visions as us, to deliver excellent outcomes for all children and young people, so we got in touch in with them.
A member of their team came out to see us. We talked about our own family, about our backgrounds and the experience we have with children, we asked questions, they asked questions and before we knew it, we were happy to be starting the assessment process.
The process didn’t seem overly intrusive and was managed sensitively. Having worked in the environment we have we were up to speed with need for safeguarding vulnerable children. I would have had more questions had Capstone Foster Care not been so thorough. We had weekly meetings with our supervising social worker and 4 months later we approved as foster carers.
Since being approved, we’ve had 3 emergency placements and one of those has recently result in a permanent arrangement.
We decided to foster because caring came naturally to both of us and when our children left our home felt empty, our experiences felt unfulfilled because we were unable to share them with others and we still had so much love, experience and guidance to provide. And while some of our placements have been a challenge, it always great hear that we’ve made a positive difference in a child’s life. And when the children accept that it’s ok not be ok and accept help it makes it all worthwhile.
Having watched our journey, one our sons has also gone on to foster and we couldn’t be prouder!