First of all, congratulations on this new adventure! You never really know what to expect in the first week of foster parenting. Much like bringing home a newborn, there are a lot of unknowns. Satori Foster will prepare you as much as possible for welcoming your foster child. For the first-week foster parent, here’s what we can tell you.
Depending on the age of your child, you may want to provide a house tour so that they know where everything is located. Alternatively, you can let them explore on their own too. Introduce them to your other children (if you have any) and other members of the family. Keep the first night low-key to avoid overwhelming anyone.
It’s never known what exactly a child will be coming with. They could have little to no belongings. However, it’s a good idea to freshen up what they do have. Think of it as a fresh start. This will hopefully make them feel a little more comfortable and welcome in your home. Take this time to note what they came with, perhaps there is something that they could use that they don’t have (like extra socks or underwear).
Ask friends, family or Satori for help. Everyone is here to help, especially if this is your first child. People are more than willing to help cook a meal, take a pet for a walk or just talk. Don’t be afraid to lean on those closest to you during this new chapter in your life. This first week could be full of tears and sleepless nights.
You never truly know how the first night is going to, or in this case, the first week. In a basket or box, have an assortment of essentials to welcome the child or youth into your home. Fill the box with pyjamas, a stuffed animal, snacks, a journal, some crayons or coloured pencils or popular books – depending on the age.
At Satori, we are committed to being responsive to the needs of the children and youth we work with, AND to our foster families. We offer effective and timely communication, individualized attention, and dedicated support. We are here for you for your first week as a foster parent and beyond. For more foster care tips and resources follow us on Facebook or Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram.