Foster care transforms lives
Published: 09 May 2018
“Being in foster care has had the biggest impact on my life. It has opened doors and helped me experience a life that I never knew was possible.”
Thomas Anderson, now aged 27, was just one of thousands of children helped by Hertfordshire County Council’s Fostering Service.
As part of Foster Care Fortnight (May 14 to 27), Hertfordshire County Council’s fostering and adoption recruitment team is now urging people to consider transforming their lives and the lives of children by becoming foster carers.
The team is supporting the national campaign led by The Fostering Network to show that “Foster Care Transforms Lives”.
Thomas said: “Being fostered enabled me to progress through education and achieve to the best of my ability, obtaining two degrees. It showed me what a loving family is like, one which I am still part of today. Foster care offered me support and stability, both things that were lacking in my life.
"I can ultimately say that if I was not fostered, then my life may have taken me down different avenues and that I am very grateful to the service.”
In Hertfordshire there are over 900 children and young people in care and many live with Hertfordshire’s foster carers.
Teresa Heritage, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Our foster carers are all ordinary people but they do an extraordinary thing, literally transforming the lives of young people. The foster carers also tell us what an amazing difference it makes to their lives, creating special and long-lasting memories.”
Foster care does not just transform the lives of the young people who are fostered, it also has the power to positively change the lives of foster carers, their families and all those who are involved in fostering.
Gloria Swanston, who has been fostering with Hertfordshire County Council for about 17 years said: "When I wanted to be a carer I was initially thinking about how I wanted to make a difference to a child's life. I didn't really think about what a positive difference fostering would make on my life, but it has had a huge impact."
Each month, Hertfordshire County Council receives an average of 55 requests for new foster placements, with many being requests to place children over the age of 10 years, sibling groups and those with more complex needs.
Anyone who becomes a foster carer with Hertfordshire County Council will receive unrivalled support every step of the way, including through preparation and ongoing training.
Please contact the fostering and adoption team if you would like more information on 0800 917 0925, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/FCF2018