For children in the care system, life can be filled with uncertainty, especially for those children in residential care. One’s childhood is very precious and time limited. As adults, many of us may remember or track our early years, which might include a timeline of significant events such as birthday celebrations, the first day at school or family holidays. Most people will have been able to share these experiences with their parents and their extended families, and will have some good and perhaps some bad memories.
Nonetheless, the people they share them with are consistent. Take a moment to imagine a child who at age 3, was no longer be able to live with their family; or a baby born into the world never knowing their birth family. What if that child could form part of a family, who can care for them and be part of the significant events in their lives, helping make positive memories for children? Below is a note written by a boy aged 6 about his foster family:
As part of this year’s campaign, we at the Care Agency want to make people aware of the importance of a person’s childhood. It is vital that we have foster carers in our community who can offer their home to children of different ages, stages in their lives and abilities. For many of our children, their early experiences mean that they are likely to have additional needs, whether this is physical, emotional or cognitive.
Many children in care can experience extra struggles, which can may concern persons who are considering becoming foster carers. A foster carer said: “We were aware that there were some medical difficulties with the baby, but had no real idea of how complex his needs would be – we can honestly say that the baby, who we fostered for over a year, has enriched our lives.
“We are so glad to have had the opportunity to have him as part of our life. Even with all the sleepless nights, hospital visits and worrying times in the beginning when he wasn’t feeding well, we wouldn’t change our time with him. We feel lucky that he has now gone to live with an amazing forever family who could see past the additional needs that he has and see him for the wonderful little boy that he is.”
Foster carers play a major role in the life of children in care by providing safety, security, love and warmth. Caring for children with additional needs requires patience, understanding, a good sense of humour and open-mindedness. For these reasons, we at the Care Agency will assign a social worker to foster carers, to provide support and guidance. Let’s Face it – Time to Foster.
Can you help turn a child’s life around? Can you Face it and become part of the fostering service! For more information please contact Elizabeth Chikasha on 200 61728 or email [email protected]