Claire's Story

  • Fostering Stories
Foster Carer Claire at our information event

We loved hearing from new foster carer Claire at our October information event.  Claire started fostering with us in April, and after caring for two children for a short period of time (respite fostering) she now looks after an 11 year old boy on a longer term basis.

What lead you to fostering?

"I've always been around children.  When I was 21, I was in a situation where I looked after a 9 month old baby until he was nearly 2.  He is now 32 and he is still part of the family!  I always had my friends kids around at my house, I used to help out with school trips so fostering was something I was always going to do."

"I waited until my daughter was around the age 11 before pursuing fostering.  The 9 month old baby is now 32 and he is still part of the family. My daughter has grown up not questioning that he is like her brother."

What was the approval process like?

"It was great, to be honest I couldn’t fault it"

Initially Claire went to see Foster Carer Phil at one of his drop in events, he described the assessment to be like creating ‘the big red book of your life’.  Claire said ‘You talk about difficult things, but it’s not intrusive.  It is all very relaxed and friendly".  She remembered that visits from her assessing social worker Caroline, were more like visits from a friend.

What have your early fostering experiences been like?

"I work alongside fostering.  That's why I started as a respite carer but I have found it has fitted in with my job so it's developed to longer term.

My first two children stayed with me for a week’s respite, and my second child was new into foster care. He was with me for about three weeks and then he moved to a foster carer to join his older siblings.

During the training you're able meet other foster carers who you can keep in touch with and learn from.  Just ask as many questions as you can!

The boy I have now settled with me really well, but he just didn’t want to talk or express any emotions and was very hard to get anything out of.  With his previous carer he hadn't spoken about what had happened and what his situation was. He was with me for three days and poured his heart out, he has settled really well."

I was a bit nervous starting the assessment process but was soon made to feel at ease. I found it to be a relaxed, friendly experience.

Foster Carer Claire