Adam and Shaun's fostering story
All kinds of kids need all kinds of foster carers. In this blog, Adam and Shaun share their story of fostering children of all ages in Melbourne.
Tell us a little bit about yourselves...
We are Adam and Shaun, and we live in Melbourne’s East where we run our own business. We have been fostering with Key Assets since 2020 and in that time, we have provided care for more than 15 children.
Tell us about your fostering experience...
We have our own biological daughter, but we still wanted to have kids in our lives and give back so we decided to become foster carers.
We first started off providing respite care, giving longer-term foster carers a break over the school holidays every now and then. Since then, we’ve gone on to care for children of all ages and at one point we had five kids in our care. We now have a 16-year-old in our care long-term.
What support and training have you received?
The accredited foster carer training prepared us well for what to expect. We also attend monthly online catch-ups with other foster carers where we were able to learn skills and techniques for supporting children with specific needs and suggest topics that are useful to us.
Each foster care agency has an after-hours number, and we often call for advice or ideas. When we cared for a young baby for the first time, we really put our hands up to ask for help from our agency, friends and people around us. We had our friends and community give us lots of baby clothes and things like that.
What are some special moments you’ve had as foster carers?
Some of the best moments have been taking the kids away on camping trips with friends. We had four kids with us in a caravan and tent and they all ran amok. They went swimming in the river and hung out with my friends' children. We are going to Queensland with the kids to visit family for Christmas and are looking forward to taking the kids on an overseas trip next year.
The special moments are when they ask you for help for the first time - when they turn around and say, “can you help me with this?”. It’s amazing to see them finally break down those walls.
What advice do you have for people thinking about becoming foster carers?
Fostering is one of the most challenging things we’ve done, but it is also the most rewarding thing we have ever done. It’s important to know that not every placement will be the right fit, so if a placement does have to come to an end or if doesn’t go well, it’s okay. Sometimes it’s just that the child needs more specialist care or a carer with a specific skill set.
There have also been times when we had to say no to a child coming to stay with us because as a family we just needed a break. The choice is always yours. If we take a child on, we take that responsibility seriously and make sure we always advocate for them.
Interested in becoming a foster carer?
To learn more about becoming a foster carer, give us a call on 1800 013 088 or enquire online.