New Year is the perfect time to try something new. Whether that’s finding a new hobby, starting a new job, or committing to new habits that will improve your health and wellbeing. But have you ever considered making a New Year’s Resolution that will help others?
Some of the best New Year’s Resolutions are those that have a profound impact on the lives of others. This could be things like volunteering at your local homeless shelter, raising money for a cause close to your heart, or perhaps even deciding to become a foster parent. Often, resolutions that are centred around helping others are the ones that we’re most motivated to succeed in. They also happen to be the ones that bring us the most joy, purpose and fulfilment.
As a fostering agency, we see first-hand the extraordinary difference foster parents can make to the lives of vulnerable children. It can also be such a rewarding experience for foster families and their children too. So, if you’ve been thinking about fostering for some time, or have been inspired by the John Lewis Christmas advert, then why not make 2023 the year you apply to become a foster parent.
If you’re still unsure whether to take your first step, then here are 4 more reasons why deciding to start your fostering journey might just be the best New Year’s Resolution you’ll ever make...
1. Change a Child’s World
There are over 80,000 children in care in England. Many of these children will have been through things that no child should ever have to experience. Whether that’s physical abuse, being left to fend for themselves, or losing a parent. Becoming a foster parent, and giving a child in care all the love, nurture and support they need, will help make an extraordinary difference to their future.
Plus, there are so many different ways that you can help. You may wish to start by offering short-term foster care to children, which means you will be in a child’s life for up to 2 years. This is often while they’re going through court proceedings, which can be an incredibly turbulent and distressing time.
Or you may want to be a long-term foster parent, where you welcome a child into your home for many years until they turn eighteen. This is a completely different experience of fostering, where a child can truly become part of your family. Often, the bonds developed over these years continue into adulthood too.
All fostering can be incredibly rewarding, and whichever path you choose, you really can change a child’s world.
2. Fostering Can Be Great Fun
While there will be challenging days when you foster – like raising any child – there will also be so many great times that you’ll share together.
As a foster parent, you’ll help them experience the childhood they deserve – and this can be a lot of fun. Whether it’s taking them on their first holiday, watching them take to the stage at the school panto, or singing and dancing to their favourite songs in the kitchen while you’re preparing dinner. Children bring so much joy and laughter to our lives, and you can do the same for them.
3. Provide Stability When They Need It the Most
If you stop to think about it, children in foster care are there with you because they can’t be with their parents right now – perhaps ever. They’ve already seen some of the worst that life has to throw at them and often feel all alone in a world that is crumbling down around them. It is this sense of being isolated that you can do something about and it may not be as difficult as you think. Sometimes all it takes is just being there, just showing them that you are not going anywhere. That sense of stability is what they need most.
4. The Application Process is a Journey, Not a Commitment
Remember, just by taking that first step to learn more about fostering doesn’t mean you’re committed. The fostering application process is a journey that will help you discover whether fostering is right for you, and if you’re right for fostering.
Plus, at Orange Grove, we will always move at a pace that’s right for you. You will never feel pressured to moving to the next stage if you don’t feel ready.
Are You Ready to Take Your First Step in 2023?
“We wish we started fostering sooner” is something we hear our foster parents say all the time. And so our message to anyone considering fostering would be to not wait for the ‘perfect time’ to start. If you adore children, and have the time, space and energy to commit to making a difference, then make 2023 the year you start your fostering journey.
And in case you hadn’t thought of it, becoming a foster parent will change your life as well. Once you welcome a child into your home, you almost always gain a better appreciation for all the things you do have and are able to do.
Maybe this year we can resolve to be there for a child. After all, it only takes one child at a time to make a real difference, and that’s a resolution worth keeping.
October 25 2023
Activities to Help Children Manage Anger
Discover six therapeutic activities you can use to help the child in your care express their feelings of anger while developing their emotional regulation skills too.
October 12 2023
Talking to Children About War & Conflict
Learn about "remote exposure" and how war can indirectly affect young people in care. Plus, how to talk to children about war and conflict.
September 11 2023
Bedroom Ideas for Foster Parents
As a new foster parent, you might wonder how to make the bedroom good enough. Use the ideas listed below to ensure your first foster child enjoys their new room.
August 16 2023
Why Matching is So Important in Fostering
Why does the matching process matter so much in foster care? There are numerous compelling reasons, and we're here to share them with you. Keep reading to find out.
July 12 2023
Preparing for Exams with a Foster Child
If a young person in your care is taking exams this year, then here are some practical ways that you can support them.
Ready to start your fostering journey?
One of our team is available to talk to you over the phone to answer any of your fostering queries.
You can get in touch by filling out our online enquiry form with any queries that you may have.
Your local office
We have local teams covering most of England. Find your local office today.