We have supported a young person from the Roberts Centre, a Blagrave funded charity, to create a booklet to break down barriers between children and their foster carers.
Chloe Geer, 17, has built up a close relationship with her foster carers and wants to help other young people do the same.
Chloe created a booklet with Fixers – the charity which gives young people a voice – featuring different activities that children and their foster carers can do together to break the ice. You can view it here: https://issuu.com/fixersdesign/docs/the_journey
The 17-year-old, who says she has a great relationship with her carers, wants to share her resource in schools to help other cared for children build a happy life.
She says: ‘Foster care hasn’t been the easiest journey, but it got me away from a difficult domestic situation that I was too young to understand at the time.
‘I had to learn to be an adult from a very young age. I looked after my sister and fulfilled many duties which were overwhelming to me at that age, but life changed when I went into care.
‘A lot of people have similar experiences and I want the booklet to benefit other children and young people and help them deal with their emotions. I hope this helps break the ice between foster carers and children, because it can be hard.’
Chloe, who lives in Waterlooville, made the booklet with the help of 21-year-old Joe Weltch, who went into care when he was nine.
It features activities such as a chart asking children to split words into positive and negative categories and a doodling challenge to draw their emotions on to faces.
Chloe, who is studying Health and Social Care at South Downs College, began living with her current carers – Jan and Kevin Turner – when she was 15 and has built up a close relationship with them.
‘I didn’t know what they were like or how I would find living there, so I was nervous at first,’ she says.
‘They spent a lot of one to one time with me, which helped me get to know them better, and they’d talk to me about how I was feeling and take me out at weekends.’
The booklet also includes tips for carers urging them to take time to listen to the foster child and to treat them as a member of the family, essential qualities that Chloe found with her own foster parents.
‘They are amazing and our relationship now is fantastic – we couldn’t be any closer,’ says Chloe.
‘They have always been there for me and are honest, understanding, loyal, loving and give amazing advice and cuddles. I couldn’t be more proud to call them my mum and dad – they have made me the person I am today.’
The Blagrave Trust is providing support to young people from 12 of the youth charities we fund to have a voice and undertake their own ‘Fix’. Fixers works with young people aged 16-25 across the UK by providing them with resources to help them campaign on issues they feel strongly about.
The charity has helped more than 19,000 youngsters across the UK to have a voice in their community on issues such as cyber-bullying, self-harm, suicide or transphobia.
For more information or to make a donation to fund more Fixer projects, visit www.fixers.org.uk