asphaleia's fostering agency were pleased to welcome new carers into the fold at the end of 2020. We interviewed them to find out about where they're at now and how their first placement has gone so far.
1. How long have you been foster carers now?
L: We were approved at panel in November and accepted our first placement in February half term.
2. What made you want to be carers in the first place?
L: it is something that I had always been interested in and my husband D agreed to go forward with our application because he wanted to support me in achieving my dream. Friends of ours had also fostered a child through asphaleia and we had both developed a close relationship with her but she moved on before we were in a position to start fostering.
I always imagined having a large noisy family but we were unable to conceive again after our second birth child.
3. Have you had any placements yet?
L: Yes we took on a sibling placement 13 weeks ago.
4. What’s it been like?
L: Wonderful! They are great kids and I fell in love with them both within the first week. There have definitely been some challenges getting them into a routine and eating a wider variety of foods, learning our rules, and what is appropriate behaviour and language etc. But it has also been incredibly rewarding to see how much they have changed over such a short space of time.
D: Chaos - sheer chaos! It has been like a whirlwind with two extra children in the house. There is never a dull moment!
5. Anything surprised you?
L: How quick it was before the new additions just felt like part of the family and how quickly they have adapted and settled into their new home.
D: How early they got up in the morning before we bought them an alarm clock for their bedroom.
6. What have your learnt so far?
L: That it is possible to change even deeply ingrained behaviours with firm boundaries and persistence and that it is always better to stay on top of my daily logs and to write them up while everything is still fresh in my mind!
D: To accept that there will always be food under the table and crumbs in the car!
7. What would you say to anyone thinking about being a carer?
L: Go for it! Speak to asphaleia and find out more about what it involves. You are incredibly well supported and prepared as you go through the process. I also found it helpful to read some Cathy Glass books as they gave me great insight into how things would work.
When we were considering applying I was torn about whether to go with a small agency like asphaleia or whether to foster through the local authority as I thought maybe they would have a bigger set up and more resources and people to help us. I am really glad we went with asphaleia as they were able to give us a more personalised service. Meetings and training was arranged around us (which was a blessing because we both work).
Most importantly the matching process was done with our interests and needs at the heart of it. Our social work manager worked really hard to find us exactly the right placement and never pressured us to accept a profile if we felt something was not quite right for our family.
Finally having now been a carer for three months we are happy with the level of professionalism, support and attention to detail we receive from asphaleia and as professionals we are grateful to be working with such a caring and reputable agency.
D: Well done and best of luck!
If you're interested in being a carer, why not join our virtual Q&A with our fostering manager and a carer to get your questions answered?
Click the below image to find out more.