Our parents are not the only ones who help shape the adults we become. There are neighbours and teachers, friends and the parents’ of friends — and foster parents who step in to bridge the gap for those who need extra support.
Who are foster parents?
Foster parents with Quinte Children’s Homes (QCH) come from a variety of backgrounds:
- post-secondary students who want to gain experience working with kids
- young or growing families who want to welcome more children into their home
- individuals or couples responding to a need in the community
Brandy travelled the world to teach, but found what she was looking for back home as a foster parent. “I found in the classroom I could see the emotional problems of my students, but could not devote the time needed to help.” Now she dedicates her time to kids who need the most support.
With their own children mostly grown up, Nancy and Kevin decided to extend their family by welcoming foster children into their home. “Our unique life experiences have taught us to appreciate the importance of other people in our lives, biological or otherwise,” they wrote.
Why foster care with Quinte Children’s Homes is different
In Ontario, more than 17,000 children rely on foster parents to provide a safe and caring home for days, months, or even years. According to the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, the average child in foster care moves every 22 months — a jarring lifestyle that QCH works to avoid.
A child in foster care has already lived with a lot of uncertainty, and may face additional challenges like behavioural problems, mental health issues, or learning disabilities. QCH’s service model for care takes a levelled approach that aims for consistency and stability; foster parents, what we also call parent therapists, are central to that plan.
Our goal is to provide positive experiences at home to encourage a healthy lifestyle as children grow up. Instead of uprooting them as their needs change, QCH works with parent therapists to adjust the level of fostering a child receives. Paired with other services offered through our partner organizations, the result is a structured and individualized level of care.
Do you have questions about being a foster parent with Quinte Children’s Homes? Leave a comment or contact us.