What a Surprise and Honor to be representing FCA at the Queens Garden Party

Archived: Posted June 19, 2017

I walked out of our yearly activity to the Panto and switched on my phone – several missed calls from just after I had turned my phone off, from various East Midlands staff members including our FSM Sue, who had left a voice mail, it was 22nd December, what was so urgent???

I listened to the message, she sounded worried, I could hear lots of noise in the background, “Hi, can you give me a call back!” I called back – straight to answer phone, what now?, ok let’s try Karen our RM. Karen answered and explained I should check my emails.

There had been a competition where each region had to nominate a carer/s to attend the Queens Garden Party and support the nomination with why the carer/s had been nominated. Karen and Sue’s amazingly written nomination for us had caught Jim Cockburn’s eye and he had chosen us.

Totally surprised, shocked, humbled, amazed, excited and very cold! Suddenly realised I was stood in Nottingham, and I needed to ring for my lift home, which I did whilst standing there, with a smile of my face and no one to tell, I needed to get home and share this amazing news with my husband Steve and family.

Following military style precession in a surreal relaxed way we entered the gates, courtyard, Buckingham Palace and through to the gardens, afternoon tea was presented as you would expect, faultlessly, however to present that level of service and quality to 8000 guests is unbelievable, proper cucumber sandwiches! a good selection of other sandwiches, wraps, canopies and exquisite bite size desserts with a lovely cuppa.

A hush descended over the gardens as the Royal Guard, followed by the Queen and Prince Phillip appeared. We observed the minutes silence for Manchester before the Queen and Royal party (Prince Phillip, Charles, Camilla, Prince Andrew and Princess Eugene were presented to some of the Garden Party guests. As the Royal Party took tea, we were served with ice cream.

There was then time to wonder around the gardens and gather at the Royals tea tent before they left at the end of the party.

It was such an amazing experience and we met some wonderful people who had contributed in so many different ways in their own area of expertise, contribution within their daily role or desire to make a difference to others.

It was also very poignant due to the previous days events in Manchester, we were also proud to be part of an amazing event that paid respect to the victims however also embraced the diversity and positives of that diversity within the UK.

As we left the Garden party we reflected on our experience, we foster because we aim to make at least a small difference, making that difference, even to one child is the positive we strive for. Our nomination was based mainly on our work with and for unaccompanied asylum seekers, raising awareness and sharing ours and our placements story. We never envisaged that this would lead to us being at the Queens Garden Party – an experience of a lifetime.

Thank you to everyone who was involved in allowing us this once in a lifetime experience.

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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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  • 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.
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