As Black History Month unfolds with its theme “saluting our sisters,” Oxfordshire County Council is championing the role of foster carers and emphasizing the positive impacts black women have had in leading change and fortifying communities.
Eileen Momanyi, a 48-year-old Oxfordshire resident, radiates pride when discussing her experience fostering 13 children over the span of four years.
Describing her deeply personal journey with these children, Eileen shared: “It is personally rewarding to see a child ‘come out of their shell’ as they begin to feel safe. Watching their confidence grow living under my roof.”
Detailing her experiences further, she continued, “The 13 children I’ve fostered have stayed with me for durations ranging from a few days to six months. Typically, they are placed under my care due to familial tensions or prior foster placements that did not succeed.”
She emphasized the vital role of a foster carer by stating, “They come to me during trying times. Recognizing that, I devote my utmost to ensure they feel relaxed and secure. Even if their stay is short-lived, I aim to make it a memorable one; a stepping stone that propels them forward, equipping them for their ensuing journey.”
Momanyi enriches the fostering experience by combining it with her love for nature. “I take the children on walks. Some of them, unfamiliar with the countryside, find the experience invigorating. Nature’s vastness – trees, open fields, wildlife – offers a refreshing perspective which, I hope, they’ll carry with them into the subsequent chapters of their lives.”
In addition to her role as a foster carer, Eileen is also affiliated with Oxfordshire County Council, serving as a social worker for adults. Speaking about her multifaceted roles, she said, “I’m innately drawn towards people. Balancing my foster duties with my professional responsibilities at the council is extremely fulfilling. I am making a difference, and the joy derived from it is unparalleled.”
Aligning her message with Black History Month’s themes of inspiring change and nurturing communities, Eileen added, “Fostering is a mutually enriching journey for both the carer and the child. I’d urge current carers to immerse themselves even deeper, and those contemplating fostering to explore it further.”
Those interested in embracing the role of a foster carer with Oxfordshire County Council can look forward to:
For a comprehensive understanding of becoming a foster carer:
Written by: Hamish Law
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