Caring for a foster child means providing a caring, comfortable home every single day. It also means making the most of the more special occasions, particularly your foster child’s birthday.
Birthdays with a foster child are significant. Your foster child may not have had a good birthday before, so it’s up to you to provide them with memories to last a lifetime.
Making Birthdays with a Foster Child Magical
There are many ways to give your foster child the best birthday they have ever had. It takes time, effort, and thoughtfulness, but it is more than worth it. Here are eight ways to make your foster child’s birthday magical.
Buy Them a Thoughtful Gift
Your first step is to buy foster child gifts. Think carefully about the type of gift your child will want. That will depend on their age, interests, and preference. To make it easier, ask them what they want!
Of course, gifts cost money. Don’t worry – foster care payments cover birthday budgets. Here at Orange Grove Foster Care, we provide a £100 annual birthday allowance to ensure you can give your foster child the birthday that they deserve.
Get the Whole Family Involved
If you want to show your foster child how special they are, make their birthday a family affair! Invite the grandparents, aunties, uncles, cousins for a get-together that they remember forever. Not only will fun memories get made, but they might also receive extra presents.
Try talking to your foster child about how many people they want over, too. Some kids prefer a quieter affair. You don’t want to overwhelm them! If they aren’t sure about having the whole family over, show them that they are loved by getting everyone to sign a birthday card for foster child.
Take them on a Trip
Birthdays are the perfect opportunity for a trip. You could take your foster child to a theme park, a museum, a zoo, or the beach. Some trips are cheaper than others, but aren’t any less fun! If your foster child is young, trips to zoos and aquariums are always magical. If you are fostering teenagers, they might prefer a trip to a shopping centre or a birthday meal at a restaurant. Give them a day to remember.
Work on a Birthday Project Together
Why not make memories that you can hold? Working on a birthday project together allows you time to bond with your foster kid. It also gives them something to hold on to. You could make a scrapbook of your time together. Or, you could bake a birthday cake. Whatever you do, make sure it is fun and put the focus on your foster child. If they want a triple-layered chocolate cake, now is the time to indulge them!
Support Contact with Birth Parents
Birthdays are a common time for foster children to get in touch with their biological parents. It can be scary, exciting, and overwhelming all at once. As a foster parent, you must support that contact and be there if they need any advice or care. You might experience a change in behaviour during this time. It’s important to be understanding and patient – it’s not an easy time for anyone, after all. If they want to talk to you about their time with their biological parent – great! If not, don’t push them.
Let Them Blow Out Their Candles
Unfortunately, some foster children never even get a chance to blow out their birthday cake candles. Whether that is or is not the case for yours, let them blow out their candles on their birthday. Make sure that the attention is solely on them – not other kids. Make them know that today is their special day. Remember to tell them to make a wish, too!
Don’t Hold Any Expectations
You might have visions of the most spectacular birthday ever. You might expect your foster child to be so appreciative of everything you do for them during this day. The truth is, not every foster kid has experienced a proper birthday. They might feel overwhelmed, and this can manifest into various emotions.
Don’t hold any expectations about how your foster child will react to their birthday presents and surprises. If you sense that they are overwhelmed, do what you can to release pressure. Make sure they know that they don’t have to do anything they don’t want to during their birthday.
Talk to your Foster Child About What They Want
The best way to ensure that your foster child experiences the best birthday ever is to sit down and ask them what they want. That is the only way you will determine how to make their birthday magical. Of course, if they are humble with their requests, you can always go above and beyond on the day!
If you're interested in learning more about long or short-term fostering with us, we'd love to hear from you! Simply give us a call at 0800 3698513 or complete our online form. Rest assured that our team of friendly fostering advisors will be more than happy to reach out to you and answer any questions you may have. We're here to help!
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