Jade first came into care when she was nine years old. She was picked up from school by her social worker and taken to the home of a foster couple, David and Elaine. Jade says:

‘I was scared and I didn’t know what was happening. But they explained it to me and we sat down, ate brownies and watched the football which was nice.’

Jade wasn’t able to go back to her mum and dad so she stayed with David and Elaine for a year and a half. After this, she was matched with a long-term foster carer, Angela, who she was set to stay with until she reaches the age of 18.

‘Angela was really friendly and held a ‘Welcome to the family’ party for me with her sons and lots of cake which was really fun. It wasn’t as scary going to Angela’s as I had met her a few times before while I was still with David and Elaine.’

‘I’m really lucky because I live with Angela, my foster carer, in Reading, which means I’m close to my friends and family. Angela is a good foster carer and I still see my family lots.’

Jade is now 17 and is classed as a ‘care leaver’. That means she is currently working towards building her independent living skills, ready to support herself as an adult. She will be ‘staying put’ with Angela, which means she can stay with her until she’s 21.

Jade says:

‘I’m really proud of how far I’ve come. When I was younger and first came into care, I was really shy. My foster carer helped me learn how to voice my opinions and understand what I wanted. I also used to be scared of speaking in public but now I’m not. I feel a lot more confident today. I finished school, which I found really hard, and I’m now studying at college.’

At Brighter Futures for Children, we’re proud of Jade too. We’re proud of all our young people who work hard, alongside us, to turn their lives around in care. But at the moment, we don’t have enough foster carers in Reading to look after teenagers.

Could you give a teenager like Jade a loving home and a brighter future?

Enquire today.