Could you give a home to a vulnerable child when they need it most? Fostering a child can provide them with a safe, secure place to live for a few weeks, months or even years. It can help them to get through a really difficult time. Children’s charity Barnardo’s is calling on individuals and families from the LGBTQ community for their support. In this article, Sue and Fay talk about their experiences of fostering with Barnardo’s.
There are many different reasons why families choose to foster but they all have one thing in common – a wish to make a difference to the lives of children and young people.
Sue and Fay from Essex made the decision to become foster carers through Barnardo’s. They have been permanent foster carers for Andrea, who has cerebral palsy, since she was 2 and a half.
“So many children are in need of good homes and we really wanted to help make a difference to a child’s life,” explains Fay.
“The first two months were challenging,” Sue adds. “Nothing can prepare you for becoming a parent, but fostering Andrea is extremely rewarding for us as a family. She has made a huge difference to our lives and has given us so much. We couldn’t imagine life without her.”
Sue continues, “Andrea has made such amazing progress from the little girl who first came to live with us. She continuously amazes us with how far she has come. Despite her disabilities Andrea has a thirst for life and has a fantastic sense of humour, she loves Disney, pirates, lions, and her iPad!”
The couple also said they would encourage anyone thinking about fostering to get in touch with Barnardo’s to find out more.
“I would advise anyone considering fostering to follow their heart.” Says Sue. “It has been the most rewarding thing Fay and I have ever done and we have also got back so much in return. I would say be brave and go for it.”
Barnardo’s welcomes people from all walks of life to apply to become foster cares and has supported LGBTQ+ foster carers for many years. They believe that if there is a diverse group of foster carers, they can better match children and young people to their perfect home.
Barnardo’s has more than 100 years of experience at finding families for children, offering support and training for foster carers from the first point of enquiry and beyond.