"For many of us, imagining our childhood as a time of adversity, of family disruption, of being without a family or even of living in an institution, is impossible. Most people, even policy makers, haven’t thought what this means for the small, ordinary rites of passage on the journey to adulthood in Australia—things like driving lessons, part-time jobs, sleepovers—let alone for the more significant steps around education, relationships and real independence."
Executive Director Anglicare Australia
Fostering Hope’s mentoring project seeks to match adults with young people between 7 and 12 years old in care. Mentors are people who choose to spend time with a young person, invest in them, and be an extra support in their life. For children growing up in care, they also are someone who isn’t ‘paid’ to look after them!
For many of us, imagining a childhood as a time of adversity, family disruption, of being without a family or even living in an institution, is impossible. Many of us haven’t thought about what this means, what it means for the ordinary rites of passage to be experienced without at least one, if not a family, of caring adults supporting you. Significant milestones such as driving lessons, part time jobs, navigating subject choices, relationships, and health, would all be difficult without a caring adult to help you through.
Research shows us that the outcomes for children entering adulthood from OOHC are poorer than their peers in the community across every indicator.
This is for a range of reasons including,
the trauma/abuse they enter care with that already increases their vulnerability,
an increasing number of children entering care and not enough carers, and
a system that isn’t resourced enough to support them and their carers.
In 2014 Anglicare Australia researched what it meant to ‘belong’ for vulnerable young Australians. The survey results point to the importance of adults in the lives of these young people, significant others who take on some of the role of caring or guiding. It found that the only way in which ‘care’ can take on its proper meaning, rather than simply being a description of someone’s living arrangements, is when that care is offered and provided with love, when the significant other responds to the young person with loving care, an expectation of growth and achievement. The report acknowledges that this is not easy to provide in an institutional setting, but we the church in Tasmania can provide this to young people living in OOHC.
Fostering Hope is working with Prescare Tasmania, Community Mentoring Tasmania and the COACH Network to deliver this mentoring program. We are seeking volunteer mentors throughout Tasmania and will provide training, matching and ongoing support.
"She is creative and inspires me"
I have been a mentor for the past year now through fostering hope, and it has been seriously incredible. I mentor a young girl, who is about to become a teenager.
"It has been amazing to see him grow in his confidence, manner and faith"
I first met the boy I mentor four years ago, on an Anglican Camping Tasmania (ACT) camp
If you think this might be you, or if you would like to find out more please contact Ellie, our Mentoring Coordinator, or you can apply to become a mentor now and she'll be in touch with you soon.
Ellie is a professional mentor and on staff at Northside Anglican Church in Glenorchy. She is passionate about enabling and empowering people to grow, especially through one-to-one mentoring. She enjoys seeing people transformed as they grasp and grow in understanding who they are. She has seen how one-to-one mentoring offers a place for this to happen for people of all ages and stages of life. Ellie is excited to hear from you and offer training and support as you begin your journey as a mentor.