couple talk to MumForce about the rewards of fostering during lockdown.


My husband and I, Stuart, knew instantly that we wanted children together.

But, after many years of miscarriages and unsuccessful IVF treatment, we decided that it was just not meant to be. Our journey was instead to help children in need.

We discussed adoption as a possible option but felt more drawn to short-term fostering, so we could help more children feel wanted.


I have three adult children from a previous marriage and when my middle daughter went off to university, we felt that it was the perfect time to progress fostering as the house was emptier and quieter. We had the two things needed for fostering in abundance: time and 2 spare rooms.

Stuart and I took our first placement a few days into lockdown.

Since lockdown Stuart and I have lost 10 stone between us through healthy eating and exercise. So, it really has been a year for positive transformations!

When this little girl arrived on our doorstep the mothering instinct in me leapt into action. I just wanted to hug her and tell her that everything would be OK. But I understood how that might have been too overwhelming for her, so we took it at her pace.

She had quite a few attachment issues due to the trauma she had experienced. We will never be able to undo that. All we can really do is try our best to try to understand them and work through them with her.  

To be honest, it was quite sad in those initial stages as we had to teach her how to eat with a knife and fork. She hadn’t even experienced that, until now.

As the weeks went by and she became more settled, we saw a positive improvement in the whole situation and she also started to learn to read. It was lovely seeing her play in the garden. She was learning to be a child again and enjoying being part of a family.

It has certainly been a challenging but rewarding placement. She is a beautiful young girl but sadly a lot of damage has already been done. Covid definitely made it more of a challenge as we were not able to take her out to the park or go swimming. But it did give us plenty of time together to really get to know each other.

The positives very much outweigh the negatives. I certainly feel like the training process stood us in good stead for this and gave us the necessary tools. At the time we felt over-prepared but seeing those scenarios come to life in our own home makes us appreciate we needed it.

I can honestly say it’s enhanced our life. It gives you the most warm feeling knowing that when we come to say goodbye, we have made a real difference in her life. We have given her skills that she will continue to use but, more importantly, she now knows that there are people that won’t hurt her and do love her.


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