One thing that lots of foster carers feel nervous about is the initial bonding period with a new foster child. However, with a few great strategies and a clear direction, it is easy to overcome. Foster carers need to work hard in the early days to establish trust and build a relationship and here’s why days out are the perfect way to do exactly that.
The Fun Factor Helps Break the Ice
Whether you are fostering in Leicester or another major UK place, there are so many fun things to do. When you make the fun factor strong enough, everything else will feel more natural too. The trick is to pick something that you know your foster child will enjoy, even if they are reluctant to participate at first. As soon as there is engagement, the conversation will come more naturally and the child will relax as well.
It Takes the Pressure Off
Going outside of the home is great for mental health as well as general well-being. It helps to take the pressure of the awkwardness of a new home environment, and being in a place that doesn’t quite yet feel comfortable. Therefore, foster children may be more inclined to engage with the family or even peers, if the bonding time is somewhere completely different from the home. When you are finished and get back to base, things should feel easier and a bit more reciprocal too.
You Can Meet People Together
A great way to bond with any new foster child is to facilitate their peer relationships, and this is always easier if you have another adult on board on a day out. You can arrange to meet up with their friends, or other people in the fostering network close by and nurture a positive relationship in a different setting. This will encourage your child to open up more and show you their true self with a person they feel comfortable with right by their side.
They Create Memories
The big, impactful moment of going out somewhere and doing something different is what creates those vital core memories all children hold precious. These influence the building blocks of their development and enable them to grow up with positive experiences under their belt. A foster carer must always strive to enrich the minds of their foster children, and there is no easier way to do this than by setting out and exploring an activity together. Memories and warm feelings are a brilliant way to nurture any relationship and they will undoubtedly create a wonderful bonding moment too.
You Have to Work Together
Regardless of the age of your foster child, it is easy to work together when a day out comes around. You can plan the finer details with teenagers, which will help them to feel more involved and in control. This will all add to how much they trust you and their perception of your relationship. For younger children, it is easy to let them be in charge in a controlled way, and it will build attachment as you go through the motions. Working together is essential for bonding.
Days out provide everything you need for a fun bonding session with your foster child.