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  1. #1
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    Default Being a foster carer

    Over the years I have thought on and off about being a foster carer.
    We are getting in a position where we will soon be ready to do it.
    We have children already but to help a child would be an amazing feeling.
    So I'm after feedback/advice. Good, bad and the ugly of foster caring.
    When you have a child in your home what happens with school, clothes, toys etc
    TIA

  2. #2
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    Following as we are thinking of becoming carers too.

  3. #3
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    I worked for a state government in child safety and worked closely with many foster carers.
    Foster carers are paid an allowance meant to cover all living expenses for the child depending on their age. So your allowance covers all their clothes, toys etc which you buy yourself. You should not be out of pocket but you will not make a profit from it either.
    Certain other expenses such as big medical bills will be covered by child safety.
    You'll have a caseworker come to visit you regularly, and will be expected to attend any relevant meetings about the child such as an annual review. The caseworker will be your point of call for support and advice.
    It's a special type of person who becomes a foster carer. So many children needing love and consistency out there. I admire everyone who does it.

  4. #4
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    Also, re. School. Where I worked if the other children in the household (your own kids) went to private school the department would also usually pay for the foster child to go there too (if appropriate) to create equality so that child was treated no differently.

  5. #5
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    Tagging @WiseOldOwl because she is a foster carer who would be very knowledgeable on the whole process.

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    ThenThereWereThree  (08-03-2015)

  7. #6
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    Following as some day we would like to foster too. My DP grew up in foster care.

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    Thanks @[Mod] Degrassi taking ds to speech therapy this morning but I'll be back later to respond.

  9. #8
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    Following this one too as it's something we're considering later down the track

  10. #9
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    Hi @onelasttime . I am a registered carer with FACS (DOCS) NSW. Things are a bit different to when started as now all carers are with agencies and not FACS. I haven't transitioned to a non government agency yet because of issues with my foster child. So the first thing you need to do is find an agency that suits you. (I can only tell you about NSW, things are different in other states). My general advise is to first consult your kids and make sure they are all on board with the idea because it will effect them. If they understand that it won't be easy at times and you want to go ahead then I would recommend not taking in any children older than your own. Some children's behaviour can be very challenging and you don't want your own children taking on that behaviour. I have been fostering for about 6yrs. I started out doing respite, emergency and short term. I think this is a good way to get your feet wet. I don't do respite anymore but still do emergency and short term (most emergency turn into short term anyway) and I am now a long term carer and have had my DS since birth. He is now 3yrs old and is very much part of our family. I choose to only take babies up to 18 months as I find that is what suits my family best. The hardest thing is when a child leaves you and you don't feel it is in their best interests but you have to resign yourself that it is not your call. Then of course dealing with access visits is also hard. Sometimes it is very hard for you to have a normal life when there are 3 visits a week. Knowing what so called parents have done to a child is awful. I once had a emergency placement of a little 6 month old girl I had to collect from hospital with a fractured arm and several fractured ribs and when they x-rayed her they found old fractures as well including a fractured skull. If your foster child has cultural needs you need to be willing to provide access to that community ie my DS is Aboriginal so we go to a playgroup run by the local Aboriginal community and next year DS will attend an Aboriginal Pre-school just as an example. The best things are too many to name. Having a sick little baby arrive at your door and him put his little head on your shoulder because he just needs a hug. Seeing a very despondent baby start to smile and respond to you or getting a drug affected newborn to sleep peacefully in your arms after hours of screaming from withdrawals. These are the rewards I get and why I keep going. You get a fortnightly allowance per child to cover expenses like clothes, gifts, medical expenses, school uniforms etc. Happy to answer any questions.
    Last edited by WiseOldOwl; 09-12-2014 at 16:42.

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  12. #10
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    Default Being a foster carer

    I'm interested in being a foster carer. We're trying for a third child, but it might not happen as I may have no eggs left. If it doesn't we will try Foster care after a break for a year to six months. My fear is getting too attached as a family to the Foster child and then they have to go back.

    How do people manage that, and how do you fit them into your family. (They would have to be two years younger than my youngest.)

    Also can you work part time after a year?


 

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