Passion for life and a generous heart have given foster carer Tracy a deep rooted desire to bring about positive change to the lives of children she looks after.
Having taken up fostering with FCA Scotland some four years ago, this is one remarkable woman who places the emotional welfare of children firmly at the centre of what she does.
Prior to becoming a foster carer, Tracy worked in the knitwear industry close to her home town in the Scottish Borders. Sadly, her career was cut short when she was diagnosed with cancer. Following a year-long programme of intensive treatment and, with support from her husband Dave and two children Nick and Jodie, Tracy has since managed to move her life on. She maintains fostering has given her a new direction in life and with the NVQ level 3 fostering qualification firmly under her belt, she takes on the fostering task with determination and verve.
Tracy explains: “I firmly believe that life is for living and fostering has opened up a wonderful new dimension to my life.
“Yes, it can be hard at times but just to see these children overcome many emotional hurdles and start to smile is the biggest reward of all. “I love being with children and if I can encourage these youngsters to develop their confidence and achieve their dreams, then I too am fulfilling my ambition.”
It is Tracy’s perspective on life which allows her to look for the positives. She has a real understanding of each child’s individual needs and with support from FCA Scotland has been able to access a range of training options to equip her for the fostering task.
“The training offered by FCA Scotland has been fantastic and covers such a wide range of topics and issues. The sessions are very interactive and because we get together in groups, there is opportunity to share experiences with like minded foster carers,” says Tracy.
“The programmes have included trainers from both FCA Scotland and external professionals who are able to offer clear guidance and recommend strategies to manage complex situations. We have explored a breadth of subjects ranging from drug and alcohol abuse, stress management, safeguarding and attachment disorders right through to allegations, crisis intervention and life story work.
“The training is about understanding the behaviour of children in care and the reasoning behind this. I always come away feeling refreshed and ready to cope with a new set of issues but I guess the real challenge starts when a child comes into placement and you have to put your training into practice.”
Tracy adds: “There was one particular course FCA delivered which highlighted filial therapy. It was all about empowering children and getting them to make their own decisions. Although it was pretty intensive, what I learned was absolutely awesome and I would recommend it to anyone working with children.”
At home, Tracy shares a keen interest in knitting, cookery and gardening which is something she actively encourages the children to take part in. Her creativity has enabled her to build positive relationships and nurture the children she cares for – offering them a safe and secure family environment in which to thrive and develop.
If you would like some more information to help you decide whether fostering is for you all you need to do is contact us.
Call us on 0141 646 4805 (lines open Monday – Friday: 9am – 5pm)
Fostering a child or young person is a big decision so we’re here to answer any questions you may have. Our friendly fostering advisors can talk you through everything you need to know about becoming a foster carer.
Outside of these hours please call 0800 434 6000. Freephone lines open Mon to Thurs – 5pm to 8pm.