Thursday 26 November 2015

Blue Sky has been an established Salisbury foster agency for over 10 years. In that time we’ve shared in some fantastic success stories and discovered how fostering can make an incredible difference to the lives of young people…and their carers! If you’re considering fostering in Salisbury, we’ve put together a few of our top tips for becoming a brilliant foster carer. We hope our advice will help you, your family and the young person in your care to get the very best out of your fostering journey together.  

Understand what fostering means

Our first and perhaps most important tip is to make sure you really understand what fostering means before beginning the process. It’s essential to recognise that you’re not adopting a child and they still have family they will need and want to have contact with. Of course, fostering can, and often does, lead to permanent care if the young person is not able to return home but you also need to be prepared for them to sometimes stay with you on a short term basis. At Blue Sky we recognise this can be difficult and provide training around this. If you’re thinking about fostering in Salisbury, you could become a life changing influence for a young person. Children who require foster care often come from difficult backgrounds and desperately need the support of a loving home. You must understand that bringing a child into your life may at times be challenging but ultimately it can be one of the most rewarding ways in which you can help someone in need.       

Be honest

In order to make your fostering experience as positive as possible, it’s important to talk to a local agency about the process. As your local foster agency, we’re able to answer your questions and alleviate concerns, whether you’re just starting to think about fostering or have been caring for children for as long as you can remember! A key step in becoming a brilliant foster carer is having someone in your care that you can really connect with and offer your support to. So that we can match children with the right carers for them (and vice versa), it helps if you’re totally honest from the start. We want to know all about you, your skills, personality, goals and concerns so that we can nurture great relationships.  

Take things one day at a time

From the initial stages of planning a foster placement right through to school runs, contact with birth families and birthday parties, a great tip is to simply take things one day at a time. If you do your best for a child each day, those days add up to weeks, months and even years. Some days will be harder than others and taking each day as it comes will help cope with instability or surprises. The Blue Sky team is always on hand to offer support and advice, alongside other foster carers.  

Enjoy fostering

Accept that fostering is sometimes hard but remember why you’re doing it. By fostering in Salisbury, you’re offering a local child the chance to change their life. It is a noble endeavour and hugely rewarding, but occasionally you might need to remember that! If you take the opportunity to connect with a child, allow them into your family and share their life, you can be certain that you will reap huge rewards from the relationship. In return, you’ll offer better care and become a brilliant foster carer for as long as you’re together.  

Use support

Our final top tip is to make sure you take advantage of the support available while you’re fostering. The best carers accept when they need help and we are perfectly placed as your local Salisbury foster agency to offer support throughout the whole fostering process. From monthly meetings and family events to structured training, 24 hour phone support and even coordinating care during your 14 days respite per year, there are a range of services available to help you become a brilliant foster carer.

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