Case Studies for Fostering
On this page, you can scroll down to see 4 different case studies for Fostering
Tahira and Haseeb
Tahira and Haseeb both in their 30’s have been fostering for almost 5 years.
When they started fostering, they had a 18 months old daughter. Tahira left her job with the NHS to be a full-time mother to her daughter. Tahira wanted to foster a child of any age as she felt able to make a change and a difference in a child’s life.
Haseeb works full time as a Teacher in a special needs school in East London. Some of the children he works with are in care and were on the wrong path getting involve with drugs or other crime. They missed a lot of support such as with education.
Both Tahira and Haseeb feel some children just need guidance and a chance. Tahira and Haseeb are willing to support young people with social, emotional and mental health challenges.
Since starting fostering, Tahira and Haseeb have had 16 respites and 1 long term placement who stayed with them over 3 years. Most of the young people were teenagers for example aged 14, 11, 10, 15, 16, 3, 5, 17 years old.
The first placement Tahira and Haseeb had was a 14-year-old teenager who was very isolated and did not trust anyone around her she was very insecure, after couple of days she started to open up and started to talk.
“Some days she would refuse to go school but we would simply talk to her and guide her, communication is key.” As the placement progressed she would play with the couple’s daughter, would offer to help with cooking, cleaning and shopping. “She felt like a family member.”
Each respite was different in terms of challenges, needs and the duration of the young person. These young people have all experienced something different that has moulded them. Carers help them to reach their fullest potential.
Here are some comments from the couple about their fostering journey so far:
This role requires a lot of patience, resilience and confidence to deal with various situations that may not go to the plan.
Children or young people just need love, attention and support in day-to-day activities. It is so important to support young person according to their age and need.
Social workers are here to support both the carers and the young person, plenty of training is given and you get your own support network and most importantly seeing a child in care being happy is a great feeling and it’s a very rewarding job.
Delrose and John
Delrose and John have been fostering since 2012. Delrose was attracted to fostering as a mother who is loving and caring and has always loved children. Delrose previously worked as a teacher and then in a bank where she mentored bright but troubled adolescents. She decided to explore fostering after friends and neighbours pointed out she would be a perfect carer.
Delrose and John have always fostered teenagers, Delrose remembers her own teenage years and experiencing things she could not share with her parents which caused her to feel misunderstood and to act out so she can relate to teenagers and see past the barriers they might try to put in place.
Delrose describes how when a new child comes into your home you have to remember you are a stranger to them and it takes time and empathy to build trust. Past experiences may cause children to act up, so resilience, persistence and consistency are key.
Asked if she had a message for people thinking about fostering Delrose pointed out how hugely rewarding it is when you do the best from you heart and see it returned with love and respect, describing her joy at receiving a handmade card from her foster child Destiny.
Destiny was in foster care with Delrose and John from the age of 9 to 18 years old.
Here are some comments from Destiny, when she lived with Delrose and John:
Destiny said “when I first came to live with Delrose and John they made me feel very comfortable but also gave me boundaries, at first I poked at this a bit but they sat me down and told me what I could and couldn’t do and I listened to them. They have always helped me when I need it, over the last year I have been trying to find a job as well as attending college and they have helped me write a CV and apply for jobs and helped me put myself forward and given me feedback. People who want to foster need to understand that some children will try to be misunderstood, you need to listen and support them no matter what as some children will suffer in silence”
Don & Bernie Lynch
My name is Don, and my wife Bernadette and I have been fostering teenagers, for over six years within the London Borough of Newham (LBN). We have found the role of being a foster carer to be one of the most rewarding and uplifting experiences in our lives.
Even though there have been many demanding challenges and stressful situations in looking after the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people in our community, the belief that you are making a difference in a young person's life is a very fulfilling feeling.
Following a necessary assessment process, which can be quite rigorous for your role as a foster carer, you are given the most thorough training, help and support from the fostering team in LBN. It is very beneficial to know that, with Newham, you are never alone in having to deal with difficult situations, arising from being in foster carer.
If you feel that you need additional, advice and support, there are also other professional bodies within Newham that are easily accessible. One good example is the Fostering United Newham (FUN) group forum, which is run solely by foster carers for foster carers and offers excellent practical advice and answers to any issues relating to fostering.
With the onset of the COVID pandemic and the interruption of young people's education, the issues surrounding their mental health and well-being is becoming more predominant and acute. We have found that this is especially the case with Looked After Children (LAC). Fostering a child or young person at this time is one of the most civic community spirited acts, anyone can undertake. As well as being financially supported by LBN, the knowledge that you have helped bring some security, stability, and happiness into the lives of the most vulnerable children and young people; helped put a smile on a face, where there once wasn't one, is reason enough to be a foster carer.
Sue Price, began fostering babies eleven years ago as a way to give her an income while at home with her three young children. She looks after one, two or three babies at a time, between the ages of new-born to three-years-old, on average for 6 to 12 months, but at times longer.
Sue provides care from her home, which she shares with Neil her partner and their three children.
Here, she shares her experience of being a foster parent.
Starting out as a foster parent
My start was a baptism of fire. However, I developed a lot of skills whilst caring for the children and working with parents at the contact centre where meetings between the babies and their families are held. I also developed an understanding of my own limitations going forward. Because my own children have their own activities, I learnt that I couldn’t do after school and weekend contact meetings with families and have become better at accepting placements which work best for my family and the needs of each baby.
A lot of foster babies will have contact with their birth mothers and families. If the mums want to keep their baby then they visit a contact centre two or three times a week, but it can
be up to seven times, and they spend time caring for their children to demonstrate the parenting skills they have and to enjoy time with their children. I’ve looked after babies of every ethnicity as well as ones who have
cerebral palsy and blindness, genetic conditions, low birthweight babies, those withdrawing from drugs who I visit in hospital until they can come home to me, and loads of healthy ones too.
People who want to foster babies must be able to commit to caring fulltime. It’s only if foster children are school aged that there is the potential to do additional work. Also, what many people don’t realise is that you can take a break between fostering placements if you need to catch up on life. I am part of a foster couple, I am the main carer. My partner and children help me out a lot, which I really appreciate but they also have work and school commitments themselves so finding time to enjoy a holiday or days out etc is very important.
The satisfaction of fostering
Fostering is a funny thing; I do get a salary from it but I also do it for the love of it.
I take a lot of pride in knowing the babies are progressing. It’s hugely satisfying watching them reach a milestone. In that sense, it’s as if they were your own child and I take a lot of pleasure in watching them develop – watching them gain weight is the only time I
am happy to see the scales go up!
It’s lovely when their family comment that the child is doing well - maybe they’ve said a word early because I’ve been reading to them.
It’s heart breaking when they go, but I take comfort knowing they are going to
a good place. Despite being hard, it is satisfying to see the babies reunited with their mums or moving on to their adoptive family. I feel proud of the work that I have done in getting them ready to move on as happy, confident little people.