Stories from Foster Carers
Sadie, from Blackpool, has been a foster carer for five years and during that time has provided one permanent and one 17 month placement, as well as offering weekend respite for children aged from seven months up to late teens.
The 64-year-old widower, who has a son, two step-children and three grandchildren, said: “My husband Roger and I had always talked about fostering but never got around to it. After he passed away I decided I had a lovely home, plenty of time on my hands and a lot of love to give and decided to go for it – even though my sister said I was mad and had enough on my plate!
“Fostering can be very rewarding but also a lot of hard work and be difficult at times. However, Caritas Care supports you all the way and there are lots of courses to help you respond to the children’s diverse needs, so you are always learning something new.
“I’ve enjoyed every minute of it and I’ve got so much out of being a carer. The children bring so much joy into my life and I wouldn’t hesitate to do it all again.”
Stephanie, from Penwortham, has been a foster carer for four years and during that time has provided long and short-term placements, as well as offering weekend respite for children aged from three up to late teens.
The 37-year-old single mum, whose 16-year-old son has cystic fibrosis, works part-time as an administrator for Lancashire Fire and Rescue. She said: “I had been thinking about fostering for a while when my son, who was 12 at the time, showed me an advert in the local paper appealing for foster carers and he said couldn’t we do something as he was an only child.
“However, I’m a single parent, who works part-time with a son who has cystic fibrosis and I thought Caritas Care wouldn’t want me! But they said they want people from all backgrounds and it all depends on the experience and skills each individual has to offer.
“I’ve never looked back because I love fostering and so does my son. There have been difficult placements because of the very diverse issues the children can have, including some with severe disabilities, but you soon overcome the challenges.
“I’ve found fostering tremendously rewarding because you can offer these children so much and you can really see the difference you make to their lives. If I was given the chance I’d like to be a foster carer for as long as I possibly can.”