Foster carers stories

Jane and Joe’s story: 35 years of making a difference

Jane and Joe have been foster carers for 35 years. They started off by offering short breaks to children with a disability as they were aware of the need for this.

They were among the first people who were assessed as foster carers for the disability scheme (changing from mainstream fostering) and this was so they could give a child a home for as long as they needed. As foster carers within the then new scheme their fee increased to allow Jane to stop working out with their home.

Through fostering they have been able to make a difference to many children, including their own. They feel that their own children and their friends have benefitted from building relationships with children with disabilities. They have felt supported and always receive the training that they require.

Jane says:

It can be hard when a child moves on, but usually this is in the child’s best interests. As a foster carer, it’s important to be able to say so if you aren’t able to look after a child too.

Jane and Joe have looked after Lily since they were approved as disability foster carers and she’s still part of their family, although she is now supported by Adult Services.

Jane says,

All those years ago, Lily claimed us as her family and we claimed her.

Over the years they have offered homes to children who needed short breaks, returned to their family, went to adoptive families, needed support in an emergency as well as children who needed permanent homes. This means valuing family time and working as part of a team are important skills.  Currently, most children with a disability need permanent homes or short breaks.

Jane and Joe have no regrets:

Fostering has enhanced our lives and we’re delighted that we have been able to made a  positive difference to many children and their families.

They still see the first child they supported.

Find out about becoming a disability foster carer.