Jan and Dave's fostering story
Read about how Jan and Dave's experiences as foster parents to 2 girls, who are now on a long term placement with them both.
We became foster carers in November 2012. Our Panel was so nerve wrecking, because we really wanted to become carers, so we were delighted when we passed.
We were introduced to our supervising social worker, Cath. She was lovely and soon made us feel at ease.
When we became a foster carets we started to receive referrals for children needing care, we were able to consider the referrals and if we didn’t feel they were right for us we were able to say so.
In early December we received a referral for two girls aged 6 and 8 years which we accepted, we felt this match was right for us and we accepted.
We had just a few days to prepare for a ‘Girly bedroom’. We made it as pretty as we could, adding fairy lights around the windows, we added new toys, teddy bears, toiletries, pajamas's and underwear and put it all on their beds so it was there and waiting for them when they arrived.
We’ll never forget the evening they came. It was tea time, we prepared a meal ready for the girls. Staffordshire Oatcakes, cheese and sausages.
We eagerly waited at home with Cath for the girls to arrive. A car pulled up, we went to the door and out came the girls, one by one.
We can still recall two beaming faces, giggles across the street, down the drive and into the house. “Hello!” they shouted.
The girls were shown around the house and into their bedroom. They squealed with delight when they saw their rooms and the presents on the bed for them.
But they weren’t sure about the Cheesey Oatcakes, as they’d not had them before.
But, hey. That was four years ago………
For the first year and a half the girls settled in well. We moved house, they moved schools and they fitted in wonderfully well within our family and close friends.
They began swimming lessons immediately after their first Christmas. The youngest girl was terrified. She screamed and clung on to the sides, lesson after lesson.
We persevered and she finally gained confidence. Four years on, the girls are amazing swimmers and are now learning to dive. They have an abundance of certificates and badges.
Out of the blue, the girls made a disclosure. This was dealt with immediately. The girls have had a terrific amount of support from their local authority social worker and from Fostering People. We have had superb support and training to help us deal with the challenges presented by the placement which has really helped in terms of our difficulties, anxieties and worries.
We have experienced a change in social worker due to Cath becoming a team manager, we are supervised by Carol and have the support has been great, as Carol has been very proactive and supportive with ourselves and the girls.
Over the 4 years of this placement, the girls have both grown up so beautifully, they have matured and are looking forward to the future with their own aspirations for when they are older.
The girls are now in a long term placement with us, which means they’ll be with us until they tire of us.
The girls are now 10 and 12. We enjoy a family life together, with lots of fun and banter. The girls love having holidays and enjoy family times together such as Christmas. It’s hard to think, but when they first came to us, they were scared of Santa.
Our fostering experience has been really positive and we wouldn’t want to do anything differently.