20 April 2018
As Queensland celebrates 2018 Foster and Kinship Carer Week, social purpose organisation Life Without Barriers is recognising their 780 Queensland foster carers, while continuing to call for more couples, individuals and families to provide short term, long term or respite care to children who are unable to live with their families.
“Our carers are special people and this week is about thanking them for their love, understanding, patience and the huge difference they are making in the lives of the children in their care,” Life Without Barriers Queensland State Director Helena Holdaway said.
“However, we always need more carers. We are looking for people who can provide a secure and nurturing environment for children of all ages – from babies, primary school age, teenagers and young people.”
Ms Holdaway said children in care have often been through difficult circumstances and experienced trauma, so we need carers who can partner with the child’s care team to ensure the best possible outcomes for the child.
Children in care come from a diversity of backgrounds, and carers are needed who reflect that diversity. This is especially important for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, who may need support to return home or be cared for by members of their own community.
“Some children will go home and we need supportive restoration carers to help make this happen. Other children will need carers, guardians or adoptive parents for life. Whether you provide short term care or commit for the long term, all carers make a significant difference in the lives of children,” Ms Holdaway said.
“We welcome carers from all cultural and linguistic backgrounds and all types of families – individuals, single parents, same sex couples, married or de facto couples, with or without children. Foster care doesn’t have to be a full time commitment – if you can spare one weekend a month or more, we would love to hear from you.”
If you would like to become a foster carer, here are some considerations:
You will need to be over 18, with relevant life experience. Upper age limits may apply for some types of care such as long term care or adoption
You can be from any cultural or linguistic background; we welcome diversity
You can be single; defacto, married, including same sex couples
With or without children
You have a spare room in your house or apartment – you can be renters or owners
You are a non-smoker or you don’t smoke in the home or around children
You are well and healthy, and have the emotional and physical capacity to deal with the
challenges of caring
Everyone in the household is an active and willing participant in fostering vulnerable children.
You need to have patience and resilience to build a positive relationship with the child, who may themselves struggle to trust you and be resistant to your care
You have the time free to focus on the needs and development of the child
You are willing to partner with the child’s birth family and the care team to ensure positive outcomes for the child
If you are interested in becoming a foster carer, please contact 1300 592 227 or firstname.lastname@example.org