“Throughout my experiences, I have seen how deprivation, lack of opportunity and choices can impact on children and young people and this awareness has driven my passion for building self-belief in those who have not had the chances in life to grow their confidence and self-esteem.”
From a young age, helping people and caring for others has been part of who I am. I’ve always worked in social development and from that passion, I have nurtured my natural skills and empathy for others. Over the years, just some of the things I have been involved in include being a Youth and Community Worker, a Learning and Aspirations Coach, a Youth Employment Worker, I have worked in schools, I have also studied to be a Counsellor and have completed many courses as part of my career. As well as being able to help others, my learning has enabled me to empower myself and regulate my own emotions.
I am a second-generation Asian, Muslim woman with dual cultural heritage, and I grew up in a multi-cultural community. I feel that any challenges and experiences I have had have led to so much growth for me and to positive things. I know that as a foster carer, I will often be advocating for a child, and I feel that a Muslim young person could really benefit from my experience to nurture a strong sense of cultural identity. It can be uncomfortable to call out prejudice sometimes, especially when it is unconscious, but done without holding judgement and with kindness is so important for a young person to see in the adults around them.
Family and friends were not surprised at all about me becoming a foster carer as it is such a natural choice for me.
The assessment process finished positively, and I very much appreciated being listened to. I enjoyed writing about my past and it felt nice to look back and accept all that had happened over the years. I found the panel meeting to be wonderful. They held space for me to talk and to show who I am. I felt so welcomed and encouraged, the experience was very uplifting. I’d done all of the hard work to get there, and this was the final hurdle to becoming a foster carer.
After the initial high of being approved, the wait can be hard, but I am a strong believer in what’s meant to be, and I understand how important the matching process is both for the child and for me.