Foster carers sometimes take the children they look after away on a mini-break or longer holiday. The benefits of seeing a new city and discovering a change of scenery are amazing for both carer and child but it is often the young person that feels the advantages the most. This guide explores what exactly there is to be gained from this type of experience.
Encourages Acceptance of Others
Children all over the country, whether they are adopted, born into, or fostered need to experience other cultures in order to become accepting of people as they grow up. Going to a place that has a diverse culture and people from all over means they will open their eyes to what’s really out there and gain a bigger picture of what the world is like. They might make new acquaintances or discover something that sparks a passion that they would otherwise not have access to in their local area.
Connect With Other Children in the Fostering Network
One amazing thing about foster care agencies is that they have branches all over the country. So, if you are actively caring for a child in a smaller community, you can reach out to those in bigger cities, for instance, carers fostering in Bristol, and connect with them. Visiting a different city and seeing other children in similar circumstances can help to normalize foster care and show them that they have peers all over, which will boost their self-esteem and encourage them to explore self-identity a little more too.
Enrich Their Mind
One of the main responsibilities of foster carers is to provide enrichment for the children that they look after. This can be done in many ways, and going to a new place to explore new possibilities is definitely a great way to achieve this goal. There is bound to be so much of the country that they have yet to discover, and it may inspire them to pursue a course of study in that area if they really connect with it or something similar.
Make Core Memories
Core memories are like the foundation of wellness. They are some of the things that shape who we are and where we go. Giving children in care the opportunity to create new memories in a fresh environment is important for their development, and will inevitably help them stay connected with their own journey too.
Explore Emotions in Unfamiliar Territory
Yet, stepping out of their comfort zone can feel scary and insurmountable. As a carer, your role will entail encouraging children to feel comfortable in new situations and a great way to do this is to explore somewhere together. This way, you are by their side as their point of safety and they can learn how to regulate in unfamiliar territory with your support and guidance. This kind of experience will show them that they can do things and help them feel empowered.
Going to a new city is a big adventure when you have children on board. Foster carers should feel confident to explore the possibilities and help the children they care for to discover new things with a safe adult by their side but remember that permission must be sought from your agency before you take a foster child on holiday.