Cathy, Solution 28 fostering
“The majority of the children that come to me on this programme have just left their family homes. I’m lucky to be able to show them that foster care is a safe place and that we are here to help them. I get to change so many more lives and really prepare them for their life ahead during a short amount of time.”
Cathy is a single carer who has been fostering full-time for the last 14 years and in that time, she has provided a safe home for over 40 children and young people. Becoming a foster carer felt natural for Cathy, who had more than 10 years’ experience working as a specialised in-home carer for children with disabilities and additional needs, and for adults with autism in a care home.
Over the years, Cathy has looked after children and young people between the ages of 8 to 17, for weeks, months and years at a time. She spends time teaching them how to cook, clean and household tasks as well as getting them into the routine of eating breakfast in the morning and doing homework in the evening. For Cathy, this is all part of setting them up for a positive future.
Cathy now specialised in a type of fostering called Solution 28, designed to provide youngsters with a safe and loving home for a period of 28 days while longer term accommodation can be arranged.
Speaking about this specialist type of fostering, Cathy said: “The majority of the children that come to me on this programme have just left their family homes. They may have only just come into care and I’m the first foster carer they meet. But I’m lucky to be able to show them that foster care is a safe place and that we are here to help them. I get to change so many more lives and really prepare them for their life ahead during a short amount of time.”
Today, she is still in regular contact with most of the children and young people who have stayed with her, and she enjoys catching up on their lives and what they have been doing since leaving her care. Cathy has also been made an honorary grandma for those she has fostered who now have children of their own, who she lovingly refers to as her grandchildren.
For more information on foster care, contact Five Rivers Child Care on 03452 660 272 or www.five-rivers.org.