Growing up in a safe and loving environment is something that many of us take for granted.
In Queensland today, there are thousands of children and young people who are unable to remain living in their family homes due to unsuitable or unsafe conditions.
Scott and Melissa have been foster carers for over 14 years, opening up their home to provide a safe and nurturing environment for some of these children and young people.
“It’s beautiful to make a difference in somebody else’s life,” Scott said. “People often comment on how caring we are towards each other. They see how our kids and the extra kids all get along and become one family.”
Having grown up in a vibrant home, filled with foster children cared for by her mother, Melissa witnessed first-hand the impact fostering can have on the life of a child or young person.
“I love it,” she said. “Getting to play even a small role in transforming young lives for the better is something so unique and special.”
Scott and Melissa have two children of their own but said that as soon as a foster child or young person enters their home, they are considered family.
“There is no use of the ‘foster’ word in our house at all; they are all brothers and sisters,” Scott said. “Even if they only stay for a few days, they are part of our family.”
After 14 years, Scott and Melissa remain dedicated foster carers with Churches of Christ in Queensland and are passionate about encouraging others to consider becoming foster carers.
“We love being foster carers,” Scott said. “It has been such a rewarding experience for us – we’d love to see more people consider getting involved.”
Churches of Christ in Queensland are always seeking dedicated people who are willing and able to take on this rewarding role.
“The demand for foster carers is greater than ever before,” said Leanne Rutherford, General Manager of Churches of Christ in Queensland – Children, Youth and Families.
“The events of this year have had inevitable flow-on effects into foster care, with more children needing safe homes and less carers available to provide them.
“Our priority at Churches of Christ in Queensland, with the help of dedicated foster carers, is to keep children and young people safe in homes where they can belong, while maintaining their connections to family, kin, culture and community.
“We also recognise that each fostering situation is unique, so carers have the option to specify what type of care they are able to provide,” Leanne said.
Churches of Christ in Queensland currently support foster and kinship carers to provide respite, emergency, short-term and long-term foster care options. If you are considering becoming a foster carer or interested in finding out more, please visit ittakesacommunity.com.au.
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