David is a Foster Carer from Holsworthy in North Devon, who turned to fostering after they sold their care business. We asked David about his background in social care and opearting care homes and how it had influenced their decision to start fostering and also whether it had aided their time with their foster family.
Did working in social care lead you to think about fostering?
Not really. We had thought of doing Fostering, but we were already committed to being care providers and had three teenage children at home. It wasn’t until we had sold the care business that we re-considered Fostering as our children were now married and had children at home.
Has working in social care aided your journey as a foster carer?
Yes. Already having an awareness of the standards and regulations and pressure on delivering care within the boundaries set by the inspectorate does make you more respectful and responsibly aware. Due to the CRB check system; to remain in care ensures you maintain a law abiding existence. To be in a position of running a care business all aspects of your profile both domestic and financial comes under scrutiny as part of the ongoing vetting process. This also is very much part of becoming a successful foster carer.
In our previous ‘life’ caring for the elderly, I felt this was a two dimensional existence, but being a foster carer (of children), adds another dimension which is modern day life; and caring for a child demands a lot of forward thinking, time, heartfelt investment, and protection from those ‘already in existence’ ensuring there is a safe path ahead to broaden their horizons so to speak.
What would be your recommendation to anyone with a social care background thinking about fostering?
It’s definitely not shift work, and you can’t choose your schedule ! It’s ongoing, but it’s down to you and it will be very rewarding, because you can depend on an experienced team to genuinely support you; and will unquestionably work alongside you who have all done this before. The training is better, and for good positive reasons, because it can be very demanding. From experience, Social care can be heartbreaking, too many carers trying to do the same job, and carers come and go therefore you are only as good as those who work with you. If you are the dedicated type then you will reap the rewards by seeing your children develop and put their initial setbacks behind them because you made those changes and gave them the chance, love, respect, support and care they all deserve. Served in all the right portions will lead to positive results, I really do believe you actually see the difference you make, well worth recommending.