Looking after vulnerable children who may have had a tough start to life can be a rewarding, fulfilling experience. But foster care is more than just that; it’s a journey. Along your foster care journey, you’ll involve friends and family, who will witness the positive impacts of fostering firsthand and will likely contribute to your foster child’s growth and development.
On top of this, you’ll be connected with other foster carers who’ll provide insight, advice and support. Having experienced foster carers to share your journey with can help immensely when navigating challenges or just wanting to talk and reflect.
Thankfully, the team at Anglicare Victoria is part of each foster carer’s support network, and is with you every step of the way. Here’s why building a support network of friends, family and other foster carers is so important, and how Anglicare Victoria is here to help.
Information sessions at Anglicare Victoria
Once you’ve enquired to become a foster carer, you’ll have an over-the-phone chat with Anglicare Victoria’s Carer Recruitment Team. You’ll be able to ask any questions you have about foster care and the entire process, and you’ll be invited to attend an information session to begin the journey. This will give you a great insight into fostering and a glimpse at the kind of support networks that are available to foster carers.
Meeting other foster carers
At a training, you’ll get to learn all about foster caring. You’ll also hear from experienced foster carers who’ll share a bit about why they started foster caring, their achievements and their challenges. Most foster carers are a friendly, supportive bunch; they’re happy to answer any questions and tell you more about their fostering experiences. At Anglicare Victoria, we promote an atmosphere of mentoring, communication and being able to easily reach out to other foster carers – especially when you’re just beginning foster care.
Support services for foster carers
Anglicare Victoria provides several different avenues of assistance for foster carers including monthly supervision, annual reviews, ongoing training opportunities and the below services:
- On call and after hours support
Whether you need some guidance on providing foster care or simply have some questions that need answering, Anglicare Victoria offers a 24/7 afterhours service so we are always just a phone call away. The team can help you answer questions on foster care, foster care payments and more. For carers with a child in their care, after hours support is also available.
- Home visits
Home visits can be scheduled freely and easily. These are in place to give foster carers a chance to seek expert advice in person and have one-on-one support from an experienced professional Building a family and friends support network
If you’ve been open about your desire to become a foster carer with family and friends, you’ve probably been met with incredible support and encouragement. Having this network of family and friends during your experience as a foster carer is important for several reasons:
- Personal support
Family and friends are there for personal support when you become a foster carer. Foster caring comes with an amazing sense of fulfilment, but it also comes with challenges, so having a network of friends and family to lean on can help greatly.
- Contributing to your foster children’s experiences
Not only is your network of family and friends important for supporting you, but it can also contribute massively to the level of support and development for your foster children. It’s crucial for foster children to be surrounded by a healthy social environment, and your extended family and friends play a considerable role in this. Here, they’ll get to meet other stable, nurturing adults which is a crucial part of development and processing stressful experiences.
- Inspiring others
When you share your positive experiences as a foster carer and sense of fulfillment it brings with your family and friends, you may inspire them to become a foster carer too. Many foster carers report that the reason they decided on foster care was partly due to being inspired by others, including family members and friends who decided to foster and never looked back.
Contact your local agency today
If you’re passionate about making a significant impact in the community, Anglicare Victoria is here to guide you on the rewarding journey of foster care. Our mission is to empower and support children who’ve had a tough start to life by giving them safe, loving foster homes all over Victoria. If you’re interested in becoming a foster carer, contact our Carer Recruitment Team and enquire about applying today