Male Foster Carer Profile


At Sunbeam Fostering Agency we recruit foster carers from a wide range of backgrounds, races, religions and sexual orientations. We encourage people from all backgrounds including those who are male or single males to become foster carers and aim to dispel any misconceptions surrounding fostering.Sunbeam profiles one of our foster carers and how his honest experiences can inspire others to foster.R.S. is aged 32, lives in London and is a Foster Carer with Sunbeam Fostering Agency.

What is it like to be a single male foster carer?
Being a single male foster carer is no doubt, more challenging, but as a male carer, I feel that I can play a vital role in caring for a child where there is no male role model, and the child is being raised in a single parent environment. A male carer can be a vital mentor to a child in my experience.
What made you decide to become a foster carer?
I always wanted to help look after children who really need care, so fostering gave me that opportunity to look after children in need.
What strengths have helped you as a foster carer?
My ability to handle any challenge without losing my temper. My communication ability with the different professionals involved in care; and my ability to understand a child needs.
What would you recommend to people interested in becoming foster carers?
I would always encourage other people to adopt this profession, because this is the most satisfying and fulfilling job one can do! However because of the challenging nature of this profession, I would recommend that people attend as many as training they can. Also remain calm in any challenging situations. Working as a team is the key to success.
How long have you been a foster carer?
I have been a single foster carer since January 2010, it has been more than 4 years.
What has been your experience of fostering?
My experience of fostering is excellent. I am fostering 3 teenagers and with the support network around me, in particular for this role, it has become lot easier to overcome any challenges.
How has the experience enriched/changed your life?
Since I have become a foster carer, I’ve become a stronger individual, especially in terms of handling challenging behavior. My views towards life have become more positive, because I see that I can make a positive change in a child’s life, especially children who really need my support. Seeing some children improving in your care gives you inner satisfaction.
How have you coped financially and emotionally?
Because I am a very calm and patient person by nature, it is a lot easier to understand a child’s emotional needs. Keeping records of all spending is very important, so that there are no allegations being put forward by any child, against you, in terms of finances. On time payments from Sunbeam Fostering Agency every month gives you better control of your finances.

Sunbeam has supported me in many ways.

Visits by my supervising social worker every month helps a lot in terms of sharing my views.
Trainings provided by Sunbeam helped me a lot to enhance my ability when handling any challenging behaviour.
Support groups arranged by Sunbeam allow me to share experiences with other foster carers.
The ‘Meet the manager’ program has allowed me to share any issue I have directly with managers and Sunbeam directors.

I would recommend to others to be open minded, because every child is an individual, and one has to be ready to manage any challenging behaviour they may display, because of a difficult childhood. Be patient, and always try to communicate with the child no matter what the situation is. Put your ego to one side, and think of child’s welfare. One has to learn how to say goodbye because this is a very emotional profession. Children do get attached to you and it is very hard to see them going from your placement.

Any good experiences you would like to share?

Fortunately all my experiences are good since I have started fostering! One of my foster children was very interested to becoming a mechanic. Seeing that potential in him, I encouraged him to do a vocational course to become mechanic. He left fostering after the age of 18, but kept in touch with me. I tried my best to guide him on how to achieve his goal, and now he is a fully qualified mechanic, earning a good income. Whenever he sees me, he always says ‘thank you’, and respects me which makes me very happy!

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