Harry's fostering story

In the first four weeks of his life Harry had lived in three different houses with three different families.

A new family on Christmas Eve: Harry’s fostering story

The first four weeks of Harry’s life were full of upheaval. At the joyful time when most families are settling into life together, Harry moved between three different homes and three different families, before arriving with foster carers Matt and Ruth on Christmas Eve. Ruth shares Harry’s fostering story:

“Fostering is something I have always wanted to do. Many years ago we were living in Canada and someone in our church was a foster carer. I knew instantly that this was something that God was asking me to do. However, with four young children we didn’t have the space and Matt wasn’t sure at that point, so I started praying that the time would one day be right. When we moved back to England, Matt started a new job and on his first day he saw first-hand some of the needs of children in care. He came home and immediately said ‘We need to start fostering’.

We had been fostering for 18 months when we met Krish and read the Home for Good book, and we knew that we had found people who thought the same as us. Home for Good has been inspiring and encouraging, and the peer support has been excellent. We have benefited from church training and retreats and just knowing that there are people who understand what we are going through and will talk to us or pray with us whenever we need it is great.

It was 21st December when we had a call from our placement team asking if we had space for a baby. Harry was four weeks old at that point, and for various reasons he had already experienced changes in carers and they now needed to move him as soon as possible. All of our (now grown-up) children were home for Christmas and we were a bit like sardines, but we knew that this was the right place for him to be so we said a resounding yes! The social workers arranged that Harry would arrive with us on Christmas Eve. We had plans to visit my parents on that day, but they understood that plans had to change – they have always been very supportive of our fostering journey, as have Matt’s.

In the first four weeks of his life Harry had lived in three different houses with three different families. Although he was very young, he was obviously confused and unsure and with so many people in the house there was noise and excitement, but he coped remarkably well. Our children are so understanding and they knew that this Christmas would be different – we would have to work around the routines of a tiny baby including sleepless nights, crying while we tried to open presents, delays in dinner as we got used to feeding times, bottle making etc.

We had lots of plans to visit church friends over the Christmas week as we were running a very small church at the time, but they were all happy for us to change plans as we needed. Many of them even found little gifts for Harry and they were all happy to do the cooking when we went to visit, giving us one less thing to worry about.

Harry had a lot of development delays and there were many concerns. For the first six months he was virtually blind and we spent a lot of time in and out of hospital. Throughout that time our church friends supported us in prayer, and with plenty of coffee and chocolate! At six months old Harry started to develop his sight, which opened up a whole new world for him.

Harry was with us for seven months and he completely captured all our hearts. It is always a heart-stopping moment when we get the call to say that adopters have been found and our first thought is usually ‘Will they be good enough?!’, although as foster carers it isn’t up to us to make that decision. But as soon as we spoke to Kimberley and David we knew we had nothing to worry about. When they explained to us their reasons for adopting, and they mentioned reading a book called Home for Good, it was clear that God had gone before us and prepared a place for Harry in just the right home.”

If you would like to help Home for Good find a home for every child who needs one please donate to our Christmas appeal.

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Author:
Ruth, a foster carer


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