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Meet Donna and Steve

Our journey began with two little ones whose lives needed lots of patience and nurturing. We had some very happy days and also some not so happy ones, but the children’s progress made every minute worthwhile. When you get that first smile, the tiny little hand touches your cheek and makes the connection with you and you hear one of them say to their teacher “my Donna”. From that moment on, there’s no other career like it.

Donna & Steve

You’re thinking about fostering, but all the dreaded stories about social workers and local authorities put you off. We know because we had the same thoughts eight years ago!

Steve and I have been together for 34 years and have two amazing sons of our own, now aged 32 and 30. I was a SEN high level teaching assistant in my previous career, and I also worked in some behaviour schools. This led me to follow my dream of fostering, but my big problem to start with was getting Steve on board. We’d had nine years child free and were enjoying all the new opportunities coming our way during our free time.

When we decided that it was the right time for us to become foster carers, it was both scary and also very exciting. During our first year, we carried out all of the required training and the (some would say dreaded) Form F that has to be completed as part of the application process. The day came when we had to sit in front of a panel for them to decide if we were good enough for the fostering journey. I’m glad to say we passed!

Our journey began with two little ones whose lives needed lots of patience and nurturing. We had some very happy days and also some not so happy ones, but the children’s progress made every minute worthwhile. When you get that first smile, the tiny little hand touches your cheek and makes the connection with you and you hear one of them say to their teacher “my Donna”. From that moment on, there’s no other career like it.

Our two little ones were returned back to their family after nine months and yes, we were heartbroken. We took ourselves off on a well-earned holiday. It was then that I received an email telling us about two little boys aged 4 and 6 that needed to be in a family unit. The matching process started, and we were chosen by the local authority and by the boys.

Since that day, our lives have been one great family journey together.

We love the outdoors as a family and love exploring in our caravan. We watch our 11- and 13-year-old now; how they socialise and meet new friends and I have to pinch myself to remember how our 11-year-old didn’t talk at first. He amazes us with how far he’s come with his brother and we know how far they both will go because they are happy, wanted and very much loved in our family. They are so very happy and confident now in everything they do.

They have achieved so many football, cricket, dodgeball and school awards and amaze us every day.

Our boys call us mum and dad. Neither of them likes to think they are in foster care and that’s ok.  Our supervising social worker, Angie is very respectful of the boy’s views and their opinions.

We’ve been with Capstone Foster Care since the beginning and we had a couple of social workers at first who were very good at their job. Then Angie came along, a mother herself, and she understands the importance of the children feeling part of a family. When you get that connection with your social worker, the fostering journey becomes much better.

We recommended another couple four years ago to join Capstone Foster Care and it’s been great watching them both on their journey, especially now they have two little ones who are thriving every day.

One of the young people placed with us said:
“We're safe, we have nice things, we live in a nice house, have lots of fun and treats and it’s not boring. I especially love our chocolate pancakes!!!”

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