For those interested in fostering, meeting the relevant criteria for eligibility is the first hurdle to overcome. But of course, there is far more to fostering than this. Here we look at the other qualities needed to enter fostering.
Patience is a virtue
Fostering is challenging and requires considerable patience and understanding. Prospective foster parents require resilience and the ability to devote both time and commitment to the child placed within their care. Many of the children requiring a foster home will have faced adversity and insecurity throughout their lives. Some may have been subjected to neglect or abuse and their subsequent behaviours may reflect the depth of their experienced difficulty.
A cared-for child cannot be compartmentalised and prospective foster parents need to be able to meet the specific needs of their child. By responding in an appropriate manner and creating a safe and secure home environment, foster parents can help children develop and thrive.
The children placed with foster carers are from an array of diverse families and backgrounds. As such, it’s crucial that potential carers reserve judgement.
Empathy and a positive attitude to difference and diversity are essential skills. Being able to deliver a child’s day-to-day care is a basic necessity. In addition, every potential parent needs to pay particular attention to the specific needs that familial separation can create.
Children will feel lost and isolated when removed from the care of their families. Being able to demonstrate flexibility in the face of difficult circumstances is crucial. Potential foster parents may need to work in partnership with birth families, as foster caring also supports children within their own home environments.
Good communication skills are of the utmost importance for any potential foster parent. Building trust is crucial, as is the ability to praise and encourage in a bid to boost self-esteem. Good channels of communication with your foster child are critical, but so too is the ability to advocate on behalf of that child, whether as a support at school or a mediator at professional meetings.
It’s equally important to seek support and learn from experience and the training opportunities available. Fostering Solutions considers training to be an integral aspect of fostering and provides a comprehensive programme for all its carers. Providing high quality support to children is of the utmost importance and carers always have the potential to increase their skill sets with continued development. Caring for a vulnerable child can be life changing for everyone concerned and fosteringsolutions.com can help you make that difference become a reality.