“I had always been reluctant to foster a child with disabilities as I didn’t feel that I had the relevant experience.
Little did I know though, my first experience of fostering would reverse my opinion emphatically.
Toni is the main carer and initially felt apprehensive about looking after a child with disabilities. The couple agree that it’s the best thing they ever did.
Tony says: “I quickly got used to the child and their individual needs. Plus, I have amazing support from Essex County Council. First aid courses, a caring social worker and plenty of support groups have all boosted my confidence and bolstered my experience.
“Upon reflection, being made redundant has had a positive impact as I’ve been able to afford these children my time and I’m more relaxed than ever."
Seeing this, I was positive that my husband and I could make a real difference to their lives. By giving them a stable, secure and loving home, it would hopefully enable them to see a happy future life ahead”.
But with a demanding job as a nurse fostering wasn't a suitable option, then she discovered Supported Lodgings...
“It’s such a positive thing to be working with these teenagers. They have often had many chances taken away from them already and experienced much disappointment. They often crave some stability and routine. I love showing them that there is a better way and instilling some self-worth in them, so they can have a happier life”.
Our carers come from all walks of life, all genders and all ages because we know that what’s important is that they can offer the care, security and stability that a vulnerable young person needs.
Read Paul and husband Gerry's story of fostering here.