Donna is a single foster carer who also balances fostering and her career.
Donna has built up a valuable support network over the years: she has a neighbour who is also a foster carer who supports her, she has also made friends with a number of other local foster carers. Donna recently spoke to us about how she has found fostering as a single carer.
Donna explains that she “always had a great desire to foster, I felt the need to give something back. However, I had to wait until I had a free bedroom, but wish I’d have done it a lot sooner”.
Donna admits that she was worried that being single would reduce her chances of being able to foster: “I knew I had to take on some challenges single handed, I also wanted to continue to work”.
However Donna explains that “it’s not half as scary as you may think. My social worker has been invaluable in supporting me on my journey."
Donna manages foster caring by providing respite care. Respite care, also known as Second Home Care, is short-term care that allows looked after children some time away from their foster carers in order to have new experiences with foster carers that are familiar to them, like a second family. However at the moment, Donna does also care for an eight year old, who Donna happily admits: “loves having me all to himself”.
“It’s not half as scary as you may think. My social worker has been invaluable in supporting me on my journey”.
Donna accepts that being a single carer has its challenges, such as “not being able to just have a bit of time out.. i.e. to nip to the shop”. However, this is far outweighed by the positives:
“The rewards are second to none. The smile you get each morning when they wake up is wonderful! Not to mention the hugs... the relationship is a close one, you get to know your little one inside out. We have become a team. I don’t know what I used to do before I fostered”.
When asked what advice she would give to other single people interested in fostering, Donna says: “Go for it!...It’s not half as scary as it seems”.
Donna also advises foster carers to use their support network and “always work with your social worker as they are invaluable in supporting you on your journey. Above all, Donna says: “Enjoy it! The good times override the challenges - and there will be a few. I just think and reflect on the difference I am making to the child’s life”.
Learn more about fostering in Rotherham
If you have any questions about fostering in Rotherham, book a call back with a member of our experienced team at a time that suits you. All our call backs are confidential.