Sunday, 29 May 2016

Fostering Love

I have been a carer in one capacity or another for most of my adult life. I have been an official foster carer with several agencies in Victoria over the past 26 years. Last year I became a kinship carer again. I had not had any official placements of children for some years although I still have my first ever foster child as part of my family so I was out of touch with current practices, policies and procedures and felt I needed the support of FCAV to get me up to date. I now belong to two kinship groups which offer a forum for us to share our challenges and joys with people who "Get it". I am also supported by a fabulous kinship care worker- Thanks Toni at CAFS (Children and Family Services - Ballarat.

I am off to the National Foster and Kinship Care conference in Darwin. I have never been to the Northern Territory or Darwin so the chance to go was exciting in itself but how I managed to be going is even more exciting. 
I wrote an application for one of four places funded by FCAV Foster Care Assoication of Victoria

 FCAV was offering to send four carers to Darwin for the conference and asked applicants to answer two questions.

1. Why would you like to attend the conference? and 2. How will you present what you learn?

So I answered the first question by outlining my experiences of the past 26 years, which includes placements from various agencies, volunteering with many more and working in the education system with kids with disabilities, behavioural issues and cultural challenges. Then I answered the second by letting them know I love public speaking and I would be more than happy to talk with any group that needed to hear about the conference outcomes.

Toni from Cafs, and I have organised some dates to talk with other kinship care groups to talk about the conference and I will write a little article for the newsletter.

 I went bargain hunting for summer clothing because Darwin right now is 30oC and Melbourne is 13oC and I have no summer clothing. Thank goodness for discount racks in department stores. Anyone who fosters kids will know all about bargain hunting to make every dollar stretch to give our kids the best chances we can.

This conference is supposedly a celebration of Kinship and Foster Carers. I look forward to that.

Staying in a spiffy hotel helps too.
                                                       Image result for vibe hotel darwin waterfront
                       While there I am going to indulge in absolute luxury  - uninterrupted sleep.
                                               I shall let you know how it goes when I return.


  1. Well I hope you have a fantastic time and learn a lot to share.

  2. Hey, hun, this little update spoke straight to my heart! We've been fostering a little girl for well over a year now. She came to us when she was 12, and will soon turn 14. We've had foster children before, years ago, but you are so correct as to how much has changed over the years. Actually, here in Hawaii, I think things are way better than they used to be. Anyway, she wants me to take her to Australia; so, one day, in the not too distant future, perhaps we'll meet up with you.

    Keep up the good work, my dear... I love you lots!!!


  3. It was great to have you in Darwin Cecilia and I know you've had a wonderful time! We did too! Our conference seems to have been a big hit all across Australia (much to our relief). Watch our FaceBook & website for photos and wrap up stories. Keep in touch and I hope to meet up with you at the Melbourne Conference in 2017 .. Best wishes, Ann Owen PS: you may be interested to read my personal blog now that you've had a taste of the Northern Territory.


Thank you for taking the time to read my chatter and look at my pictures. I hope you found something to brighten your day. <3