EDITORIAL: Thanks to foster carers for being selfless

Parenting would undoubtedly be one of the toughest – yet most rewarding – gigs in the world.

It is a privilege and an honour to mentor, guide and love a child and watch them grow into adulthood and make their own marks on the universe.

Raising your own child or children in today’s sometimes tough society can be demanding, so the decision by some people to open their homes and their hearts to help young children in need can only be commended.

Many of these people – foster carers – are already parents to their own child. Others are single, but feel the strong need to offer a good home to those children in need.

As National Foster Care Week draws to a close, it’s time the community says a collective thank you to these people who give so much to society’s most vulnerable.

While being a foster carer helps those in need, for the entire extended foster family, it imparts a sense of helping others, of being selfless, of being generous of heart and mind and of giving without asking for something in return.

These selfless people, who come in all shapes and sizes, ages, religions, political beliefs, wholeheartedly welcome the challenges which must come with being a foster carer. There are the obvious challenges that come with having a virtual stranger live in your home, but there are also the not so obvious ones, like what environment have these children come from, what special needs do they have, what horrors have they endured.

These wonderful foster families have the delight of bringing a child or children into their home who sometimes carry a burden no-one should endure and then watch them change and blossom and see them be happy and smile because they now have a feeling of safety and of unconditional love.

Some foster children have never known what a family life is like until they are taken in by foster carers. For some it is the first time in their young lives they have felt safe and loved.

CAFS is holding information sessions where interested families can come and learn more about foster caring, talk to the foster care team and current CAFS foster carers and ask any questions they might have.

Sessions will be held on September 19 at 2pm and on September 26 from 5.30pm to 7pm. Register at www.cafs.org.au/curious-to-know