Corby Support Group
By Diane, Supervising Social Worker
The Corby Support Group has been running for 5 years and takes place on a monthly basis, alternating between workshops in a local community centre and lunches in a local pub.
This group has grown together and whilst I take a lead on organising and setting up the sessions, the carers play a part in determining what sessions look like and how they would like them to run. Every January there is a session where carers will suggest issues that could be discussed and local services that will come and speak to us.
We have had sessions on Emotional Regulation, Solution Focussed Interventions, the benefit of horse riding for Looked After Children, Theraplay, Child Sexual Exploitation, Internet Safety, The Role of Appropriate Adult, Managing Teenagers, Virtual School workshop…the list goes on. We also take the opportunity to complete some mandatory training on occasions.
What is becoming increasingly important to carers in this group, however, is the opportunity to share experiences and be able to express any concerns or worries they have around fostering within a trusted and safe environment. The advice, support, guidance and reassurance provided by their peers is something that is incredibly valuable; I have had many times when carers have been upset and distressed but have found comfort from others and leave the group re-energised. Their sense of humour often helps them through very challenging situations and laughter is generally not far away when this group meets.
The group know each other very well but are also welcoming of new carers coming along. They will offer their telephone numbers to those who may need some local support and will make themselves available for a chat or a cup of coffee. There are a number of carers who meet up regularly outside of the support group and have forged firm friendships.
I thoroughly enjoy being part of this group and know that we will go from strength to strength.
This is an extract from our 2017 Year Book, designed to take you through a year with Alliance Foster Care. To find out more and order a copy click here to give us your details.