Although being a foster parent is a rewarding job, you will be overwhelmed by worry when your first placement occurs. We advise you to stop worrying but it’s not easy. We have compiled some tips and tricks to help you get through the first few days.
A Strong Support Network
It is important to surround yourself with people who can support you in times of need. This can be family, friends, or fostering support groups. You should register with Fostering People to get support and guidance.
Help is not a weakness
Your support network includes your loved ones is there for you. Don’t be afraid of asking for help when you need. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from a group of people. This is not about asking for advice. You should also ask your family members. They will be happy to lend a hand in cooking or providing nappies in an emergency.
Stick to the Rules
You will need to have rules in place if you already have a family. This is because you don’t want your children feeling like you are playing favorites by trying to negotiate. Finding the right balance is key to setting guidelines for foster children. While you don’t want them to be overwhelmed, it is important to set boundaries. If you are experiencing backlash due to your rules, explain why they exist. Your new position may not have ever heard of it before.
Routines are the True NVP
Many children in care have had a turbulent and uncertain life. You should establish a routine and explain it to your new placement. Foster children will feel more at ease if they understand what’s happening during the day. You can explain your day to toddlers or little ones by showing them pictures.
Foster children are unique and will have their own needs. If you are opening your doors to multiple foster children, it is important that you get organized. This can be done by making a binder that contains all paperwork and background information for each placement.
A foster placement will find your home alien. It is your responsibility to make the child feel at home. You must provide your child with love, routine, and rules. While you can expect some backlash from your caregivers, don’t let that stop you from loving them. Never be afraid to ask for help if you are in need.