Bev and Mac – TACT Foster Carers since 2017
We have been fostering for a total of 5 years now, although we started the process of transferring agencies last year and were approved as TACT carers earlier in 2017. We wanted to find an agency that was closer to us and would make it easier to travel and support the child who was in our care; we liked the fact that TACT were a charity and the information they sent out to us seemed great, so they made it an easy decision for us.
Fostering had been something we’d been thinking about for a while, but that little push we needed to take the leap of faith was after watching Children in Need one year. Reduced to tears at seeing the pain and misfortune which some children had experienced, I decided that there must be something I could do to help – fostering has since allowed us to make an impact on the lives of children who need it.
We’ve found TACT to be such a supportive agency since we joined – the training we’ve undertaken so far has been informative, but delivered with a sense of humour ensuring that everyone feels at ease; a great combination! We’ve also received regular supervision, phone calls and emails and we can have no complaints whatsoever. Whenever we have needed support or a query answering, TACT have come to our assistance.
During our time fostering, we have cared for four children. Our foster son has stayed with us the longest, having came to us when he was 13, five days before Christmas. It was special moment when he hugged us on Christmas Day and thanked us for giving him such a great Christmas. We’ve been through many highs and lows with him and always tried to give him the best support we possibly can. He has excelled in sport and we’ve been fortunate enough to attend awards ceremonies and witness him receive countless awards, including awards from school for ‘achieving against the odds’, an award for ‘recognising the efforts and achievements of young people in our community’, as well as countless football and cricket trophies. He turned 18 in May and chose to remain living with us under the Staying Put scheme – we’re very proud of the young man he’s grown up to be and what he’s achieved, and hopefully he’ll continue to grow and achieve more with our support while he stays with us.
We have faced challenges along the way – a lot of the children you care for as a foster carer have extremely complex and troubled backgrounds, meaning it’s not always a simple task. We have cared for one child who wouldn’t adhere to boundaries which were put in place, refused to attend school and often absconded to different counties to meet with friends. It can be difficult at times, but we’ve been very grateful to the team at TACT West Midlands who have been super, offering support and guidance whenever we’ve needed it. We’re also very lucky to have a loving, supportive family around us who have been able to help us out when the need has arisen.
Fostering has made us feel that we are doing something extremely worthwhile with our lives and we believe we are providing stability and love for all the children that come through our door. We have raised the foster children as if they are our own, trying to steer them in the right path and encourage them in their interests and hobbies. We get such pleasure from even the smallest steps a child makes in the right direction. It can be challenging, but so far, the highs have outweighed the lows and we get an enormous sense of satisfaction when we help and nurture the children we care for.
We are now ready to welcome our fifth foster child into our home. Hopefully we can help to change someone’s life for the better by providing a loving, safe and happy home.