Nicola Hill, author of 'The Pink Guide to Adoption' and 'Proud Parents', along with her partner Laura became foster carers for London Borough of Hackney in 2010, having realised there was a national and local shortage.
We always wanted to have children in our lives and since 2010 our lives have been very child-focused; we have had two long term placements.
The journey has been hard at times; emotionally draining and challenging but making a difference to young people's lives, helping them to achieve success at school, showing them different countries, activities and raising their aspirations, this is the reward. We have witnessed and supported their personal and academic achievements and built within them a confidence that enables them to try things that they may have never considered.
Fostering can be hard, so I would say to anyone thinking about it, consider the change it will have on your life and make sure you have a robust relationship (if you are doing it with a partner) and support network: join forums on Facebook etc. talk to friends and family but don't bottle things up. You need to be resilient, assertive and willing to advocate for the children, so read as much as you can. Through it all, make sure you also take care of yourself.
If you would like to know more about becoming a Hackney foster carer, see what is fostering? or contact us using the details below.