Thursday, 26 May 2011

Being in foster care feels like home

Following the great response to Pip's entry last week, we spoke to 12-year-old Wirral-based Amy, who tells us - in her own words - why being in care has come to feel like home.

I was six when I first came into foster care, and at first I thought being in foster care would be like Annie, with Miss Hannigan! I had never been to school that much, except for Friday’s when a social worker would come along to make sure we were going to school, but even then me and my sister tried to get out of it.  However now I actually don’t mind going, as I have a lot of really nice friends and I love most of the lessons, especially chemistry were we can blow up things! And I am doing alright in other subjects as I am in the top set for a lot of lessons.

Sue, my foster carer, explained to me from the very beginning how important getting an education was and how it could give me choices and change my life for the better when I grow up. In year 6, she encouraged me to enter for the 11 plus, as she believed I was capable, though my teacher disagreed. My social worker Andrea also supported me all the way as well. Having only 10 weeks to prepare for the exam, Sue provided me with a tutor and I had some lessons on the weekend using workbooks with Sue.

I was really pleased with myself for getting into a grammar school, but mostly I am proud of getting my mum and my Nan being proud of me. I can’t remember one time I made them proud, and I found out that I had passed my 11+ the day I saw my Nan, which made it more special.

I like all the presents I get at Christmas and on my birthday, I get three sets of them. Off my Nan and my aunties and uncles, off my mum and brothers and sisters and then off my foster carer, but I also really enjoy the holidays we go on, I love going abroad!

Although I know I will always love and miss my family, I now know that I would never have come this far if I had stayed living in my old lifestyle. Sue, my foster carer and her two daughters have helped me to believe in myself.

Probably the worst thing about being in foster care is when you miss your mum. You can’t always ring her for comfort and you can’t always see her when you want a big hug, but you can always ask your foster carer for comfort.

Being in foster care it’s just exactly the same as being with your family, it is normal to be a bit shaky or a bit scared at first, I was, but you soon get used to it. After a while you hardly even think about yourself being in care, it just feels like home.

For more info and advice on fostering, please visit the BAAF website. If you are considering becoming a foster carer, check out's Could You Foster? website.

You can also find a wide range of books about fostering on BAAF online bookstore.

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