Many people consider becoming a foster care family because they have the space and feel they can offer a child a stable and loving environment. This decision should not be taken lightly; many foster parents have taken years to make their final decision before starting the application process. Here, independent foster care agency Capstone suggest a few things you should take into serious consideration before making your final decision to apply to become a foster carer.
Any child you welcome through your door becomes part of your family whether they need short term fostering due to family illness or long term fostering while they wait to be adopted or have been removed from the home due to abuse or neglect.
It is so important to realize that many of these children can have behavioral problems. Some have stayed in numerous homes and others have had difficult family homes. Often you will find a foster child requires a lot more attention than your own children. As such, it may be necessary to take time off work to ensure that the child settles into their new home environment and routine.
Consider The Impact on Your Own Family
Foster parents can be anyone whether single, married or living with their partner as long as they are over the age of twenty one. The application process alone can take six months or longer and it’s essential that the entire family understand the impacts of welcoming a foster child into their lives.
Fostering is a very rewarding experience, but it can cause family problems if the entire family is not aware of what to expect, especially when the child being fostered has developmental or behavioral problems. Foster agencies provide extensive training to the whole family to minimize any of these problems, however the impact should be fully considered.
Can You Let Go?
As a foster parent it’s important to be able to let go. A child may be in a foster home for a year or more before being moved on, but by then bonds have formed and as rewarding as it may be to see how that child has developed and grown with your nurturing, it can also be heart-breaking to watch as a child that may have become an important member of your family leaves to return home or to join their new adoptive family.
Foster care is an essential process for children who are unable to stay in their own homes for any reason. As a foster parent you are offering a nurturing, loving and stable environment for that child, welcoming them into your family with open arms. Be sure it is the right decision for your whole family before applying.