I foster with FCA and my daughter does too

updated at 4:23 pm, April 14, 2020

We love to share stories from our foster parents as they reveal their greatest fostering moments, challenges along the way and impart their knowledge to help someone thinking about becoming a foster parent.
Sharon and her daughter Lauren from Northern Ireland both foster with us, here is Sharon’s story.

Mum Sharon has been happily married for 39 years and together with her husband have two birth children (who are now adults) and two small dogs.

“I have been fostering for over six years.  We began with Kinship Care of my two nieces, once this ended and the girls were grown up, we began really looking into foster care.  When my husband retired we became aware of the need for foster parents and we felt we now had the free time to dedicate to other children who needed care and support.

We started by looking online at the options available and approached FCA Northern Ireland to find out more information and had a home visit the next day.
Friends and family were very supportive and understood the positives and negatives due to Kinship Care arrangements we had in place before.  There were also family discussions with our two birth children to get their approval, this went extremely well and both of our children were ready to help and support us whenever needed.

FCA have support available 24/7, a great training programme which is enjoyable and interactive, support groups and a therapeutic approach to helping looked after children in care with wrap round team parenting, child therapy and respite.  We have brilliant support from our supervising social worker and 24/7 emergency on call if needed.

As a foster parent there are challenges, fitting in some time to ourselves can be difficult.  There is also managing challenging behaviours and working through the hard days, always remembering to not take anything personally. Dealing with situations that you may not normally be used to.  But on the other side fostering brings so many rewarding moments in fact too many for me to mention but the ones that stick out the most would be the FCA choir competition at Titanic Belfast where our young person sang a solo part and the choir won first place.  Also achieving GCSE and A Level Results for their future.

When my daughter Lauren said she wanted to foster too I was happy and proud, I knew she would be very capable as she contributed and worked very closely alongside us fostering from the beginning.  From Lauren’s previous experience as our support person and living alongside foster brothers and sisters she already knew the ups and downs and had a good insight into what becoming a foster parent entailed.  We are always there for each other to offer advice and support.

I would recommend new foster parents attend training sessions, it is very beneficial.  Going to local support groups gives a much better understanding and support from other more experienced foster parents who can pass on great advice. Reaching out to your supervising social worker when needed as they will always be there to listen and can give advise when you may not be sure what to do.

If you feel like you want to give something back then fostering is a great choice”.

Interested in fostering in Northern Ireland contact us to find out how you can make a difference.

How can we help?

Ready to start fostering a child or young person? Or just want a bit more information to help you decide whether fostering is for you? All you need to do is contact us.

Phone us

Call us on 0800 023 4561 (lines open Monday - Thurs: 9am - 7pm, Fri: 9am - 6pm)

Fostering a child or young person is a big decision so we're here to answer any questions you may have. Our friendly fostering advisors, many of whom are carers themselves, can talk you through everything you need to know about becoming a foster carer.

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Phone us

Call us on 0800 023 4561 (lines open Monday - Thurs: 9am - 7pm, Fri: 9am - 6pm)

Fostering a child or young person is a big decision so we,re here to answer any questions you may have. Our friendly fostering advisors, many of whom are carers themselves, can talk you through everything you need to know about becoming a foster carer.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Call me back

Haven't got time to chat now? Leave your details and we'll call you back at a time that suits you:

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
  • Why do we need this? So we can email you a brochure.
  • Why do we need this? We appreciate that starting to foster is a big decision that needs careful consideration and you are likely to have questions. We’d like to help answer those questions.
  • Please enter your postcode to see news and events in you area
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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