What’s it like to foster?
Becoming a foster parent
When you become a foster carer, you open your home and your heart to a child who needs somewhere to live and someone to take care of them.
At St Christopher’s we believe every child has the right to a happy childhood, regardless of their past experiences. Children in care do not deserve any less than their peers just because they are in care – and our foster carers play a key role in showing young people that they are just as worthy and important.
With a fostering charity like St Christopher’s, you can be confident that children are at the heart of everything we do. We are a not-for-profit so we can concentrate fully on providing the best care to children and young people.
A rewarding way to make a difference
There’s one thing our foster carers always say about fostering – that it’s rewarding. You put effort into getting to know a young person and overcoming challenges, and can really see the results at the end when you see them achieving their dreams.
A young person might find it scary when they first arrive to live in a new house with their new foster carer. They may have lived in several places while in care so they might feel worried about being in a new place.
As time passes, the young person will start to realise that their foster carer is there to help. They will start to open up and relax, which is when trust starts to build.
I would give it the gold buzzer. I've got people to play with, a nice bedroom, and I like my carers.
How will fostering affect my family and my children?
Choosing to foster affects your whole family. When your extended family are on-board with fostering it makes a massive difference to a young person’s well-being and sense of belonging. They have a whole group of people looking out for and caring for them.
Your children’s impact on fostering cannot be underestimated. Whether they are young and living at home or have already flown the nest, they have an important part to play. They can help a foster child feel at ease – if they see another young person has a good relationship with their carer, then they will recognise that they could have a relationship like that too.
Your children must be aged three or above when you decide to become a foster carer. This is because we want you to focus on your child’s development whilst they are so young before committing to helping others.
At St Christopher’s we include all children in our activities, whether they are fostered or not. We want our young people to grow alongside their peers and have fun together.
Foster carers’ children are celebrated every year through Sons and Daughters Month, a nationwide event that acknowledges the contributions they make to fostering.