Foster care gives Jodie a second bite at life

“IF I NEVER went into care I would not be the person I am now” – these are the words of 20-year-old Jodie, who first went into foster care at the age of 11.

From first feeling scared to make the move into a foster home, Jodie, who lives in North Somerset and is now expecting a baby boy, said she sees her foster mother as a role model.

With The Fostering Network’s Foster Care Fortnight starting on Monday, the campaign is aimed at raising the profile of fostering to highlight the need for more people to come forward and open up their homes to young people.

Jodie (pictured left) said: “At first I was moved around to a few different homes but when I was about 13 I moved into respite in Clevedon. That house then became my foster home.

“My foster mother was a great figure for me to look up to and we would go out shopping and do girly things.

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“I was really interested in dance so my foster parents got me into a dance group. They took an interest in me and with everything I wanted to do, they backed me the whole way.

“I remember they threw me a birthday party. All eyes were on me and I felt like I was on the red carpet.

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“My foster carers sat down with me and talked about what I was feeling, which really helped me get stuff off my chest.”

Jodie said there have been some difficult times for her in care but, looking back, she is able to reflect and realise how much she has changed.

She said: “I did feel really horrible when I first went into care and I cried most nights.

“With my background I think that if I never went into care I would not be the person I am now. I left school at 15 and got an early college transfer, which my foster parents helped me with. They guided me down that route.

“I felt, with them, that I had a second chance and I see my foster mother as a role model.”

Even though Jodie has now moved out of her foster home and has her own place, she said she still spends time with her foster parents.

To find out more information on becoming a foster carer contact the North Somerset Fostering team on 01275 888999.

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