Our Love146 carers are individuals from all walks of life, culturally, and demographically. But what connects them is an open mind, and their willingness to accept the challenges ahead. Whatever that means in their journey as a carer to a trafficked child.
When a child or young person comes into our care, they have experienced a great deal of loss. And the exploitation and abuse they’ve suffered means that their trust in adults has been destroyed.
Therefore, it is vital to find a family that can restore, re-build, and support them to recover and thrive.
The journey of a carer starts with our Director of Care, Lynne. She works closely with our carers and talks us through where that pathway can lead.
“When our Love146 carers, Christine and Steven completed their training they were ready and waiting for their first young person to be placed with them. And as usual, I got a call from a local authority requesting an immediate placement.
I promptly called Christine and Steven, who were equally excited as they were nervous. So, I ensured them that the Love146 team was at the placement ready to support them when they welcomed their young person into their home.”
Our carers are the people who are always there to hold that child or young person. Christine and Steven were the people who held her through the difficult times and celebrated the big and small achievements that she made.
Our carers are the family who will live with a child 24/7.
“At the very start of Christine and Steven’s journey they were supported by our team at Love146. Firstly, to implement an immediate safety plan.This is so we can ensure that there is ‘wrap around support’ for the young person, and for them as carers.”
As a carer you are the family who is there with our young person when meetings have ended, and everyone has gone home. But rest assured our team will always be at the end of a phone, and we could visit at any time if needed.
“They both embraced their new life. They told me how they enjoyed learning about the young person’s home, their favourite foods, and together as a family they could enjoy eating the dishes that she cooked.”
“As her English was minimal, Christine and Steven made communicating fun. By using post it notes, google translate but always knowing our Love146 interpreters were available, if needed.
They always ensure that she did not feel shy about communicating, and learning English.”
When you start your journey as a Love146 carer, you will have the greatest impact on the child in the here and now, and in the future. You are family. Many of the young people we care for stay in touch even after they’ve moved on.
The young person Christine and Steven cared for stays in touch with them and the wider team. They see her regularly even though she is living independently, they celebrate birthdays, see each other at Christmas, and other family gatherings.
They have become family, like all families we are in it for the long haul.
Our support for you, as carers, will also look at how caring can impact your life, what is important to you in your life, and what support you might need to continue caring. We will provide wrap around support to the young person and to you our carer, so you are recognised and valued.
I have been working with young people who have been trafficked for over thirty years, and I still feel inspired and humbled by their strength, determination and their eagerness to learn and flourish. But also by our carers, who want to make a difference, and they certainly do.