October is Children of Foster Carers Month, The Fostering Network’s annual campaign to celebrate and raise awareness of the vital contribution children of foster carers play in a fostering household.
As a family of six boys, life is busy for Emma and Dyfed, foster carers in Gwynedd. But the invaluable contribution and support of their 3 children Iwan, Iestyn and Iori, has enabled them to provide a loving home for three younger boys in need of care.
Emma and Dyfed have been fostering with their local authority Maethu Cymru Gwynedd since 2017 when they became special guardians for their nephew. At the time, Iwan was 18, Iestyn 16 and Iori was only 9 years old. In 2020, two young foster boys joined the household making them a family of 8!
Iwan and Iestyn are now adults and have both graduated from University, returning home between each term to support their parents in the care of three young boys.
Iwan, who recently moved to London, had an extended period between jobs where he stayed at home to support his parents with fostering. He would share the responsibility of school runs, bath and bed time, taking the boys to football training and matches with his parents. He’d have clear rules and boundaries in place when the children were in his care. The family’s Supervising Social Worker, Mererid Williams has descibed Iwan as “a very nurturing, loving and caring role model for them.”
Iestyn, who recently graduated from Aberystwyth University, is now back home and like his older brother Iwan, has always been very involved in caring for the young boys by helping with the school runs, peparing meals and bedtimes.
Iori, the youngest of the three sons, is now 16 and also helps with the care of the children by entertaining and playing with them whilst Emma prepares tea. During Social Worker visits, Iori will often take the boys out to play or to another room to disctract them from the adult conversations.
All three of the young children who live with them have a positive relationship with Iori and evidently adore him as their older brother.
Mererid Williams added: “It’s simply heartwarming to witness the loving, caring and sibling-like bond between all six boys within this household. It is evident that Emma and Dyfed feel they have six children and that their biological sons view the three young boys as their little brothers. From a young age Iwan, Iestyn and Iori have been integral to the fostering household and provide a strong sense of family membership, belonging and acceptance to the children in their care.”
On behalf of Maethu Cymru Gwynedd, thank you Iwan, Iestyn and Iori for your outstanding contribution to fostering.