This week at Homefinding, sees us take a bit of a deep breath following foster care fortnight.
It was quite an intense week for many of us in the office as we spent a lot of time thinking about the children still in need of new homes as well as trying to persuade individuals and families to do something worthwhile and consider fostering. On a personal note, it has made me quite reflective.
I fall into that category that a lot of people fall in to, in that, I have thought about fostering. I also fall into that group of not doing anything about it. My experience with fostering is quite varied. I grew up in a fostering family and now work for the Homefinding and Fostering agency in a variety of roles. I have always thought that one day I might become a foster carer but there always seems to be a reason not to. Initially I thought my children were too young, I have had four, so there was always one of them that was too young.
Then I thought my husband wasn't as committed to the idea of it, he didn't have any real experience of knowing what it was like have other children in your home. Then I didn't have a spare room. One of my sons wasn't sure, I didn't have the time, I didn't want to give up my job. It went on and on. My children are now much older with the oldest two preparing to go to University. I do have a spare room and my husband is interested. My job is flexible and part time and I can not honestly think of any reason not to.
I have spent the last two weeks trying to convince people like me who are thinking about it, to do something about it. And I know that all the reasons that I have highlighted aren't barriers to fostering. They are excuses. So why havent't I done anything about it. I am not sure to be honest. I am a bit of a worrier and I worry about how resilient my children would be.
But maybe the time is right for me to take it further. Maybe you know somebody like me and just need that bit of encouragement to make that phone call. Because the reality is we need more people to take that plunge. Very few people who foster, regret it.