Lisa has been fostering for nearly four years
When Lisa first started fostering, initially she just wanted to focus on task centred fostering. Task centred foster care, also known as short-term foster care, can range from a one night stay to a period of up to two years while the local authority assesses what the best next steps are for the child’s future care.
Task centred foster care is for children in our care who need a temporary place to stay before returning to their families or into longer-term fostering or adoption. However, Lisa is now hoping to offer more long-term home matches alongside the task centred care and recently spoke to us about her journey to becoming a foster carer.
“When I made the decision to foster, I researched the differences between agencies and fostering directly with Rotherham Council, and spoke to some existing carers for both. I decided to apply with Fostering Rotherham as children are placed with local authority carers first where possible... I was a single carer when I first applied and was approved. I later met my current partner who then went through the application process for us to become joint carers”.
The couple, who currently have no birth children of their own, are approved to foster children aged 0-18, so far they have taken care of children from two days old up to 14 years old.
Lisa explains: “we currently foster two children, but have had six children on a task centred basis, and many more for respite and day care. We like to foster primary school age children, or younger, as that is where I have most of my experience (Lisa previously volunteered in a primary school) but we have had a teenager live with us who was absolutely lovely and we would have been happy for her to stay as long as she needed”.
“When I made the decision to foster, I researched the differences between agencies and fostering directly with Rotherham, and spoke to some existing carers for both. I decided to apply with Rotherham as children are placed with local authority carers first where possible”.
Lisa explained that she wanted to become a foster carer because: “I love being able to help and support children at a time when their lives can be at their most disruptive and upsetting. I want to help them to cope with all the changes they are faced with and provide them with love and stability whilst a positive outcome is reached”.
Lisa believes that the support available to foster carers is fantastic: “we have an amazing group of foster carers in Rotherham who are all supportive of each other; and we have a number of support groups where we meet up once a month. We each have a supervising social worker who we can get in touch with if we have any problems, and they visit regularly to make sure we are getting on okay and getting any training or support we need”.
“If you have a spare bedroom (or two) and the space in your heart to care for some children who really need it, then please consider fostering”.
When asked what has been the most rewarding part of foster caring to date, Lisa said that “the most rewarding part of fostering is seeing the change in the children from when they arrive to when they leave, they can grow and mature so much in a loving safe environment and knowing that you have helped them to do that is so rewarding”.
Lisa continues, “If you have a spare bedroom (or two) and the space in your heart to care for some children who really need it, then please consider fostering. It is such a worthwhile job and I would recommend that anyone looks into it if they feel they can help a child feel safe and secure whilst away from their family”.
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.