Being a foster parent in 2021
Fostering in a post-pandemic landscape
As 2021 nears its end and with 10 October marking World Mental Health Day, here at Family Fostering Partners, we can't help but pause and reflect on the year past. What does the future hold for our existing foster parents, their families and those people who are considering foster care for the first time?
Masks, bubbles and being baffled
If like us, you've spent parts of the last 18 months being baffled by some of the seemingly conflicting advice regarding social distancing, bubbles, mask-wearing, etc., it'll come as no surprise to learn how some foster parents have found negotiating the rules and regulations, even harder.
Keeping younger children entertained with limited resources and recourse to parks or gardens is difficult enough, but there is a finer level of negotiation to undertake with young adults. As young people develop a sense of identity, express their desire for increased independence and start to challenge authority, enforcing lockdown rules has seen our negotiating and diplomacy skills tested again and again.
Through our ongoing support of foster parents, our anecdotal evidence has revealed that some have found it particularly difficult to navigate a clash in behaviour and attitude towards pandemic restrictions – where one is more strictly adhering than the other. With stability such a crucial element of the foster home environment, it's hardly surprising that the changes and upheaval bought on by the pandemic have resulted in a testing time for these families.
Children and young people who are looked after, have the right to support, security and love in their foster home; indeed, these qualities have often been absent from their family home. So, it is a testament to the dedication and patience of foster parents, that by and large, these choppy waters have been successfully navigated.
Foster parenting – home is where the heart is
Home is where the heart is -so the saying goes, and if you've found that your working conditions have given you more time at home, maybe you've considered opening your home and your heart to fostering a child.
You're bound to have plenty of questions about becoming a foster parent, and we're here to help answer them all for you – all you have to do is get in touch.
Family Fostering Partners puts foster parents and the children in their care at the heart of everything we do. Through our expert team, we're able to support and advocate on behalf of foster parents, leaving them free to focus on the important bit – the care and nurture of a vulnerable child.
Vulnerable young people placed with foster parents come from a range of backgrounds and cultures. Therefore, it’s essential that the foster parents we work with fully reflect the same diversity. Since the civil war in Syria and the as yet unseen full impact of the regime change in Afghanistan, we've been asked about foster care for unaccompanied asylum-seeking children; our blog offers more information on this.
As a Tier 1 fostering agency in Wales, as well as proving high-quality care for children in the Mid-West of England, we are experts in making sure our foster parents have everything they need to ensure they can offer a safe, loving home to a young person who needs it the most.
Future foster parenting
As the country comes to terms with the aftermath of the pandemic, many people are reporting that the experience has been a formative one – priorities have changed, old habits and living on 'autopilot' have gone.
We're noticing a wider consciousness of the value of mental health, community spirit and a desire to help others.
The world may have changed but the skills you need to become a foster parent haven't. Our support and training processes are all still in place, as is our unwavering guidance and commitment to quality. So if you feel you're ready to become a foster parent, we'd love to hear from you.
Click here to find out more about Family Fostering Partners, request an information pack or book a call.