Foster carer Gaynor has spoken about her experiences of fostering as part of this year’s push to encourage more people to enquire about becoming a foster carer.
The former medical secretary, is encouraging others to follow in her footsteps and consider fostering children in need of a home.
Gaynor will be the face of this year’s Foster Care Fortnight campaign, running 13-26 May, with the theme of ‘Change A Future’.
We will be sharing a video of Gaynor’s experiences on their social media channels, along with interviews with her son Cameron and foster daughter Sarah.
After taking redundancy from the NHS, Gaynor said it felt like the right time to pursue something she had wanted to do for a long time – so not only did it change her future, it changed the future of those she went on to help.
Gaynor, who had two children already, said: “Just by chance, I spoke to someone from Caritas Care while I was out shopping in Preston and asked if I had ever thought about being a foster carer. It was like fate and the we started to get the ball rolling.”
After going through all the necessary checks and training courses, Gaynor and husband Stuart agreed to offer respite for children requiring short-term placements in the first instance.
After a few short-term placements the couple welcomed Sarah, a teenage girl, into their home. Sarah, now 20, lives independently but still sees Gaynor regularly.
Six months ago, Gaynor and her family started caring for two young girls who needed an emergency placement. That placement has now become longer term.
She said: “It’s a privilege to provide a loving home for a child. Somewhere they feel safe, secure and wanted. You don’t need to be a blood relation to be family.
“It does have its ups and downs, and its hard work sometimes – but it can be with your own family. It’s not always an easy ride, but it’s 10 times harder for the children involved who have already been through so much at such an early age.
“It’s so rewarding. Your life changes – but for me it has changed for the better. I would definitely recommend fostering with Caritas Care.”