Foster Care: How to Make a Difference in a Child’s Life
A child’s growth and development depends on the amount of love, care and attention he or she gets from parents. When the biological parents either fail to take care of their children or cannot afford to support them anymore, they have no choice but to turn to foster care for help.
A common misconception about foster care is that once children start living with foster parents, they cannot be taken back by their biological parents after they become capable of taking care of their kids again.
Well, foster care does not aim to separate a child from his parents. Instead, it puts the children with a foster family that is ready to take care of them until the actual parents of those children take them back. Foster parents for needy children can either be informally arranged or with the help of the court or a foster agency.
The main aim of a foster family is to take care of the children separated from their families until they can and later reunite them back with their parents. Sometimes foster parents get the opportunity of adopting the foster children if the court finds that the actual parents are incapable of taking care of these children.
Main misconceptions attached to foster parenting
There are many misconceptions attached to foster parenting. For example, foster parents feel that they will not be able to handle the reunion of foster children under their care with the actual parents since the emotional bond that develops between foster parents and children is equally strong and the entire process will be emotionally draining for both parties.
Although it is true to a certain extent, with time, foster parents will get over it since they have an option of taking care of more such needy children and do their bit to put a smile on the faces of those children.
Another misconception about foster caring is that it is a tough and expensive process. To take good care of the children, couples who wish to volunteer as foster parents are given free training and home study by the agency that sends the children to these families. Foster parents get sufficient money to keep them financially afloat to take care of their families and the foster kids living with them.
Are you eligible to foster?
For being a foster carer, all you need is to be genuinely interested in it and then approach a foster agency and volunteer to take care of children who need some love and support. The agency expects the following out of foster parents:
- No prolonging mental or physical illness
- Should be aged above 21
- Have a spare room in their house
- Should have knowledge of a common language like English for communication
To understand more about foster caring and check whether you will be able to do it or not, visit PerpetualFostering.co.uk website. This organization can walk you through the entire process of foster care, and if you think you can take care of the children, they will arrange the same for you.
Advantages and disadvantages of foster care
Foster care is the best way by which one can give back to the society. Many children are separated from their families because their parents do not have enough to support them. Sometimes children are forced to deal with extreme conditions like abusive parents, poverty, etc., that affects their mental health. Such children should be treated with love and care to help them come out of those traumatic conditions and lead a normal life.
There are many advantages and disadvantages of foster care. The major advantages of foster parenting can be:
- Helping aid: This is the biggest advantage of foster care. You get an opportunity to transform a child’s life in a positive way by providing good education and resources to make them independent. The child grows in a stable and secure environment and is bestowed with love and care by the new parents.
- Monetary benefits: Although this should not be the reason for opting to foster a child, it is a known fact that foster parents are paid to take care of children abandoned by their families.
- Better parent: Fostering a child makes you a better parent as you understand how to treat them and how to choose what is best for them. You get the picture of what the child has undergone and contributed in a small way to keep the child happy.
- Environment change: Change in the environment for a child who has had a difficult life helps in a great way. Putting the child with foster parents who create a free and positive environment transforms the child’s psyche and makes them more confident in life.
Some disadvantages of foster care are:
- Miss home: Children put on foster inevitably miss their parents as being with completely different people may scare them.
- Trial and error method: Foster care may or may not work for the child. Sometimes even after a good counseling to parents, they are not able to make the child feel at home. This calls for a change in foster care for the child and it becomes difficult for them to adjust anywhere.
- Deep attachment with foster parents: Often, children out in foster care get so attached to their foster parents it becomes difficult to reunite them with their family. Children feel completely lonely once they are back to their biological parents as they develop a deep affection for the foster parents.
Do you care to foster?
Foster care has its own pros and cons, but it indeed is a satisfying experience to be a foster parent to a child and take care of them as much as you can. In fact, you give back to the community in your own small way and also help a child experience all he should in his childhood. You feel complete when you take the opportunity to be the reason for a child’s happiness!