After nice years in the police force, Sam was led to a new role after seeing a newspaper advertisement seeking people interested in becoming a carer.
Sam had always wanted to be a foster carer and as a single, working parent, part-time care has suited her family unit best. After contacting My Forever Family NSW, and going through mandatory checks and training Sam became a registered part-time carer and provides a stable home for children and young people for short periods of time whenever she can.
As a single parent and former police officer, Sam sees caring for children in out-of-home care as a way to continue supporting children in her community, and an opportunity for her daughter to connect with other kids in the home environment.
The most important thing for Sam as a part-time carer is showing a child that there are people and places outside of their long-term placement that are safe.
“As a part-time carer I enjoy showing children that there are other safe places for them, and there are people who care about them. Providing that safety and show them that they don’t have to be scared is what drives me.”
Carers play a vital role in providing security and warmth to a child when they are at their most vulnerable. Over time, part-time carers become a part of a child’s extended family and network of support, providing guidance and mentorship and helping build a sense of security and community for the child or young person.
Sam loves getting to know about the children through their long-term carers and planning and preparing activities to suit their interests. “When you’re not their full-time carer you have the chance to plan ahead and make it into a bit of a holiday for the kids. You can do things you wouldn’t normally do, including fun activities for your own kids.”
Providing care for children on a part-time basis also allows her daughter to experience life as a bigger family unit and learn crucial life skills.
“My daughter is an only child and she enjoys having other children to share her life with. I see her learning how to share and develop important communication skills.”
While Sam is new to caring, she has been learning and growing with the role. She has completed training offered by My Forever Family NSW and finds it useful in her day-to-day life.