Our only regret is that we didn’t do it sooner!

Published 30 Apr 2024

Affinity Fostering Ambassador Richard has been fostering in Lincolnshire for 7 years. He was recently interviewed by Julie and Chris on the Through Noon Show on Radio LCR and spoke eloquently about the moments that have defined his fostering experience.

“We started fostering because of my wife Sue,” Richard explains. “She had spent some time in foster care when she was a baby because her mother died. I think there was always that deep connection. Sue was a probation officer when she met and supported a young mum who ended up having her baby removed from her because there were no available mother and baby fostering placements.”

So, Richard and Sue applied to foster with Affinity Fostering and, faithful to that initial vision, specialised in parent and child fostering. 7 years later, only one of the young mums they have supported has been unable to care for their child long term. This demonstrates an enormous amount of skill and tenacity on Richard and Sue’s behalf.

“There are lots of challenges of course,” says Richard. “Some of the young mums have mental health problems and we have had to deal with difficult aspects of this such as self-harm.”

When asked how he and Sue manage some of the more difficult challenges around supporting young people, Richard is clear about what they value.

“Affinity has offered us incredible support. They have provided therapeutic input for the young people as well as support and training for us. We have had so much training and development and Affinity has really responded to the evolving needs that come up with each new young person we care for. In terms of the successes we have had, Affinity has enabled us in this because they are so diligent and thoughtful in their matching. This means we are given every chance to succeed.”

Richard goes on to explain that the rewarding moments of fostering far outshine the challenging ones.

“There is nothing quite like seeing a young person turn things around. To mentor and support young people to parent well. To keep young families together and empower them to thrive. You can’t place a value on that. Our only regret is that we didn’t do it sooner!”

Fostering changes lives. Such a big change can be hard to embark upon. It may feel that there is never a right time. Richard’s message is clear.

“If you want to foster, you have a spare room and the time and motivation to devote to a child or young person, just do it. Just do it!”

If you’re interested in talking to us about fostering, you can get in touch at info@affinityfostering.com visit our website hyperlink to landing page or call us on 01245 237 158.

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