MEDOWIE couple Jason and Nicole Dawe have recently been approved as foster carers and hope their story and the just-finished National Foster Care Week will encourage other families to think about getting involved.
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The Dawes had been considering fostering for some time, but a health setback for Nicole last year put things on hold. Fortunately she made a full recovery and the family went ahead with their plans.
Jason, Nicole and their daughter Kiara have always opened their home to family and friends, so it was only natural the fostering role would suit them.
Kiara was always a big part of the decision making, with Nicole telling News Of The Area “We always wanted a big family, and we’ve always wanted to help children.”
Nicole and Jason foster through Allambi Care, an out-of-home foster agency for children and young people in the Newcastle and Hunter region.
They first contacted Allambi Care in March this year, and began their training program in May.
Following their training, and a comprehensive assessment checking process, they were eventually approved as authorised foster carers.
Things haven’t looked back since.
They were matched with two children and Nicole said “the kids have settled in really well, it is wonderful.”.
Jason and Nicole had tried for more children of their own, including through IVF.
“It seemed like the universe was telling us we were meant to have our big family through foster care,” Nicole said.
It was a whole-of-family decision and Kiara adores having siblings to dote on, and is thriving on the experience.
As Nicole said, the new additions to the family “will always know how special and loved they are in our home”.
There are many children and young people in our community who, through no fault of their own, cannot live with their parents or families.
Carers for emergency, respite and long-term care are urgently needed.
There’s no stereotype for a carer and Allambi Care considers people from all walks of life including families such as the Dawes, retirees, same-sex couples and singles of either gender.
If you have considered fostering a child or children, now could be the time to take the next step and experience a truly rewarding role.
By Rachael VAUGHAN