Within Great Britain around 80,000 children and young adults are currently in public care, with around 48,000 being looked after by foster care families. Foster care is one of the primary ways in which children and youths are provided with stability in times of turbulence.
Children and teenagers may need to stay with a foster carer due to a number of different reasons; perhaps a parent or guardian has to be admitted to hospital and there is no one else to care for the youngster. Many children in need of a foster care family have experienced some degree of neglect or abuse and all have been separated from their birth family.
Whatever the reasons for an individual needing a foster family, there are several benefits to them receiving the care and support they need. Safety and wellbeing are two of the most important things in life and are easy to take for granted if you have a stable home life.
Children in need of foster care may not be coming from a secure environment so simply having a safe and sound place to live can make a huge difference to their life.
Supporting some of the most disadvantaged children by being a foster carer affords them a successful transition into independent adult life.
Every child has the capacity to grow, develop and achieve their life goals and the stability provided by a foster care family can help them to do so. One of the greatest rewards of being a foster carer is being able to witness children and young adult’s progress whilst in your care and knowing you played a major part in this process.
If you do decide to pursue the foster carer route then make sure you have a strong support system of friends and family in place to help you when you need it the most. As is the case with most things in life, foster care can be stressful at times and it helps if you can share your experience with others.
You may also find that your foster care agency has a support system in place, enabling you to attend and participate in support groups and meetings where you can get together with other foster carers and help each other through the ups and downs.
If you have your own family then it is important that you consider their needs before committing to fostering . Your partner and children will have to share their home with a foster care child and may have to make some sacrifices. Make sure you have all family members on board so you can provide foster children with the most supportive environment possible.
Many children will return to their family home following their foster placement whereas others may receive long term support, either through continued fostering, adoption, residential care or being supported to live independently.
Adam Singleton writes for a digital marketing agency. This article has been commissioned by a client of said agency. This article is not designed to promote, but should be considered professional content.