Celebrating our achievements in Wales this Foster Care Fortnight
To mark the start of the Foster Care FortnightTM celebrations, Sarah Thomas – our Director in Wales – shares what she is most looking forward to and how she plans to celebrate our fantastic #FosteringCommunities.
This Foster Care FortnightTM will be my first opportunity to celebrate fostering as a member of The Fostering Network team. The fortnight has been an important date in my calendar since I started my very first fostering role as a supervising social worker back in 2005. I remember many of the FCF events which I’ve been involved in over the years and I’ve met so many incredible fostering families. I have often found myself agreeing to do things that I wouldn’t normally do! I’ve been dressed up in a variety of costumes over the years, completed fun runs, baked (and eaten) too many cakes and enjoyed every single minute of the celebrations.
I think that to have annual dates in the diary to celebrate fostering is recognition in itself of how valued and special fostering families are in our society. This year in particular we really want to celebrate and recognise the strength of the fostering community in Wales. We’re inviting you to take the time to come together, to share stories and celebrate the difference that fostering makes, the difference that you make, as a foster carer.
The fostering community is made up of many essential ingredients. Surrounding every foster family is their wider support network, sons and daughters, aunties and uncles, friends, neighbours, the fostering service, supervising social workers, children’s social workers, and so many more. Each community is unique and should be celebrated for this very reason.
This year in Wales we wanted to find ways to bring the whole fostering community together whilst doing something which is known to be good for our wellbeing. With this in mind we decided it was time to create the first ever FCF choir! We’ve called in the experts to help us with this; I’m told you don’t need a good singing voice, which is good news because I don’t have one! The invite to sing with us for FCF22 is open to everyone in the fostering community in Wales. We’ll be learning a song and then singing our hearts out together in true Welsh style. Who knows, Britain’s Got Talent might be in touch if it all goes well!
I’ve also been invited to join Foster Wales as they hike up Snowdon during FCF22, this will be another first for me and as I write this I’m not sure if I should have been in some sort of training to prepare?!
During the fortnight I’m most looking forward to meeting as many foster carers in Wales as I can. Hearing your stories and the dedication that you have made to children is what keeps me motivated and I’m going to need quite a bit of motivation to get up Snowdon :)
As we celebrate FCF in 2022 I want to say a heartfelt thank you to every foster carer in Wales and also to the people who surround them with support. Children’s lives are transformed because of you and all that you do.