Why foster?

Fostering Changes Live 3

Fostering changes lives.

We want local people to foster our children. Your love and care will give a child the support and confidence they need to grow and develop to build a better future. 

Fostering for Foster Newport means you will be part of a team working together to help children succeed. It could range from short-term respite to long-term stable placements. 

Download the Fostering handbook (pdf)

Why foster? Read our case studies to find out:

Tia’s story

Tias Story Small

Back in 2015 at the age of 11, I was placed in a foster placement with my brothers that should have only been temporary until they found it somewhere else long-term but 5 years later I’m still here.

When I first came into foster care I was so scared that it would be another thing people could treat me differently for! Being a youngster growing up in foster care at first was very hard and scary but it really helped me find myself and realise that I wasn’t just someone who was caring for somebody else and having to worry about what I was going to wake up to, it showed me that it was ok to put yourself first. 

When I was growing up I was always the shy, quiet little girl who would say no to everything, I would just spend all my time at home and say no to any opportunity that would mean I would be around a lot of other people.

Five years on now and I’m forever around a lot of people, I am involved in theatre with my foster mum which has given me the chance to meet so many new people that have bought my confidence out but has also given me the chance to become very close with my foster mum. 

At times, foster care can be hard because you can be treated like you’re not a normal young person such as you get called a ‘looked after child’ when in reality every child is looked after. When I was in school I found it really hard because you had to leave lessons for the meetings. People would ask what type of meetings were there and why we got to leave class.

At one point I was talking to a teacher about my GCSEs and we were going through my school records and we came across that they put down being a ‘looked after child’ as an additional need. I found it very hard to deal with and very upsetting because I felt like I’ve been treated differently to everybody else.

About three days later I decided to go to my head of the school about it to confront them and ask them why being looked after was something that made me different to all the other children they had nothing to say.

I would love to make a difference within the system to be able to stop children having to be called ‘looked after children’ to be able to make children feel equal to all the other children. I would also like to make sure any foster carers long-term or short-term know that’s what they’re doing is amazing!

Lastly I would love to make it clear to social workers how amazing they are and how I commend them for their amazing efforts towards such a difficult job. 

Grahame and Wendy's story

FosterCouplePixels

Wendy explained knowing you have made a difference as a foster carer brings an immense feeling of achievement and is the most rewarding thing she has ever done.

Grahame said fostering “has been a ride” - a mixture of fun, sadness, frustration but, most of all, an overwhelming sense of pride.

Grahame and Wendy Anzarni are energetic and passionate foster carers who have worked with Newport fostering for seven years.

Grahame, aged 61, and 51-year-old Wendy have been married for 12 years, are self-employed and live in Newport. Their own children have left home and started their own families.

They have been incredibly successful at caring for children who have suffered severe abuse and neglect, who have arrived at their home with significant behavioural issues and an entrenched sense of fear.  They have supported these children over time to develop a sense of belonging security and self-esteem. Grahame says their secret is to love the children they care for and accept them as part of their lives and wider family. 

As a child, Grahame suffered physical and emotion abuse from his parents and used his experiences to motivate him to be the best father he could be and, with Wendy, supported their children to become successful and kind adults. 

Once their own children grew older they felt that they has so much more to offer as parents or carers and together considered fostering.

Their first experience of fostering was for 15-year-old Rachel. They initially hesitated as she was older than they anticipated but they agreed to a period of respite. Rachel arrived with her hair over her eyes, in low spirits, scared and withdrawn.

An anxious Grahame was unsure how to respond but decided they would make a pizza from scratch. This went brilliantly well and Rachel joined in and ate all her pizza after previously eating very little.

Rachel described her time with them as “this is happiness” and her opening up to them invoked an immense emotional reaction which acted as a launch pad for their fostering career. Rachel later returned to their care and stayed until she was 19.

It wasn’t all smooth sailing and her earlier childhood trauma would sometimes manifest itself in difficult behaviour and even challenging Grahame to hit her. Grahame told her she couldn’t do anything that would make him hurt her.

Rachel received the highest exam results of any looked after child and is now a qualified hair stylist, working in a local salon.  Grahame and Wendy remain close to Rachel and include her as one of their family. This means Rachel can continue to depend on them, which acts as a secure base for her from which she can feel safe into adulthood.

Grahame says they replaced neglect, abuse, shame and avoidance with care, warmth, routine, patience and love. 

The next child to move into their home was five-year-old Lily who had suffered significant neglect and witnessed domestic abuse. Grahame and Wendy were charged with the task of trying to repair some of the psychological harm she experienced by teaching Lily that the world could be a safe place and that adults can be trusted. 

Today Lily has many friends and her teachers have warmed to her emerging charm and personality, this was shared by teachers during the latest parent/guarding consultation and Grahame said he became overwhelmed with emotion.   Lily, although still needs lots of support and encouragement and been given an opportunity where she can meet her full potential, she now needs a cuddle every night before she goes to bed and is the life and soul of any family gathering. 

 

Call (01633) 210272 to find out more or complete the form below

Apply to be a foster carer

(You can register for a council account when you follow this link, or simply click on 'guest' to leave your details)