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Ask anyone who has been a respite carer (short-term foster parent) what it is like to foster a child short-term and they will tell you it’s a worthwhile experience with untold rewards. That’s not to say the challenges aren’t there. They are. Yet despite the difficulties that come along with day-to-day respite care (fostering), it can be the most fulfilling thing a person can do. Fostering can change your life in so many ways. Here are seven reasons why the respite carers (short-term foster parents) in the Sanctury Care community are grateful for fostering.

1) There’s extra love in the home

All foster children are different; some more difficult than others. However, no matter the difficulties faced, when a child is placed into your home, they are immediately a significant part of your life. Your home will be filled with more love than you could ever have imagined.

2) The laughter is contagious

Watching your respite (foster) child smile or even laugh for the first time is incredibly heart-warming. Being a foster parent provides you with the privilege of watching a child learn how to play and laugh again while interacting with the other children in your home. That laughter is often healing for everyone involved.

3) They play a part in helping the birth parents heal

As a respite care (short-term foster parent) providing care to a child, it is sometimes easy to forget that the parents of your respite (foster) child are people in need. They deserve your kindness and sympathy, not your anger. By working with them and by showing them kindness and compassion, not only do you help them, but you can also show their children an important lesson in love and humanity and help them in their own journey towards recovery.

4) There is never a dull day

The needs and responsibilities of so many children one after the other can, at times, be exhausting. However, because of the new-found playful energy at home, there will never be a dull moment. Each day is an adventure that holds new surprises.

5) A lesson in service

Many veteran foster parents with children of their own will tell you that they’re eternally grateful to have had the opportunity to inculcate their children with important values; such as selflessness and the need to help others in need. To teach the next generation how to be compassionate members of society is a gift on its own.

6) The learning never stops

Being faced with new challenges every single day, respite carers (foster parents) are constantly learning new perspectives from the different children from differing backgrounds that enter their home. This constant learning process helps develop them as better parents and people.

7) The rewards never end

Respite care (short-term fostering) is not easy. It is probably the most difficult ‘job’ you will ever have. Yet, it is by far the most rewarding one you will ever do. Without a doubt, you will grow along with your respite (foster) child and become a far better person with each child that becomes a part of your life.

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