My Experience of a Mother & Baby Foster Placement
Parent and child placements enable young, vulnerable parents (usually a mother and baby) to stay together at a time when they need extra support. Parent and child foster carers can provide extra parental support for the young parent, whilst sharing and teaching them a range of skills associated with parenting.
Our carer, Alison*, shares her experience of being a mother and baby foster carer:
Today, I said goodbye to the young person that I’ve been caring for over the last three months, who stood and cried as I drove away (and she never cries!). Although full of challenges, it was undoubtedly one of the most rewarding placements I’ve ever experienced.
I wasn’t asked to do an assessment which would be more usual of such a placement, but rather, to offer support and guidance to S*, aged 17 and her daughter B*, just eight months old.
On their last day with us, we sat down to enjoy pancakes and presented each other with gifts whilst saying our goodbyes. S gave me a card, thanking me for caring for both her and her daughter, for showing her that she can be a good mum to her baby, and for giving her experiences that she ‘would never have had’ if it wasn’t for us.
S told me that she wouldn’t have ever taken her baby swimming if it wasn’t for my encouragement. We taught her to cook, budget her money and helped her to plan ready for her move. Whilst with us, we were able to take her on two holidays, one of which was a camping trip. She tried the high ropes for the first time in her life, went roller skating, rock climbing and we climbed a small mountain together, with S wearing a baby rucksack. Once we reached the top, we enjoyed the amazing views of the Lake District. During her time with us, S completed a two day first aid course. This was the first time she had received any education since having her baby.
Although only a short period of time, we packed as much into those three months as we possibly could, and I know that S will look at life differently because of it.
Today is a reminder of all of the reasons why I foster.
What a purpose to have in life, to be given the opportunity to show a young person another way and to help them live their lives to the full.
Good Luck, S.
*Some names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals.
Parent and Child placements are becoming more popular and we therefore need to recruit new foster carers who are able to offer their support and experience to help and new Mum or Dad during their first weeks of parenthood. If you think you would be able to offer this essential support call Nicky today on 0808 284 9211 for an informal chat about what is involved.