We are often asked “what makes a good foster carer” and some people think it simply comes down to their circumstances, where they live, what the accommodation is like, the animals they have, the children in the home, whether they are married or not and / or their previous professional training.
Whilst all of the above can have an impact on someone’s ability to foster, none of them are what we consider the most important factor. So what is?
Having the right ATTITUDE!
We often tell our children that ‘with the right attitude you can achieve anything’. Whilst that may be an overly optimistic saying, there is no doubt that foster carers with the right attitude will more likely help a child to achieve and progress towards a secure and successful future.
Although it is impossible to expect all foster placements to have a positive outcome, even with the best of intentions, it is generally recognised that too many children move too often from one foster family to another. Too many times do they move from household to household waiting for the moment when the next carer will say they have had enough. Under normal circumstances you don’t ‘have enough’ of your own child, you deal with the issues come what may, but for some people a child in care is expendable. It’s not unequivocal love but love with conditions attached.
Fostering can be challenging, there is no doubt. Behaviours can be extreme at times and making progress can feel like climbing a mountain. Carers who truly change lives will accept a child as they are, they will be patient, committed and will be driven to not give up.
Many foster carers throughout the UK will see themselves in that above description, and we should be truly thankful for what they do for children & young people and for society as a whole. Whatever their circumstances they are likely to have the right attitude. If you have the right attitude then why not speak to your local fostering provider and see if you can turn your attitude into an aptitude.