Khyl’s time in care hasn’t been easy, he comes with baggage, his trauma.
This World Care Day Khyl shares his story about being in out-of-home care and living with OzChild foster Carer, Emily.
Kai* entered foster care in January 2020 aged 14. When he arrived, he had been diagnosed with moderate depression, social anxiety and moderate OCD and he had been refusing to take his medication for some time.
He was shy and withdrawn and would often spend all his time in his bedroom, only speaking when asked questions, and even then, his answers were just one-worded responses.
Kai’s foster carers knew there was a lovely young man busting to shine through so they were determined not to give up on him. So they worked hard to get him to understand the importance of taking his medication while making sure he felt welcome, comfortable and safe.
And the perseverance has certainly paid off. Kai is taking his medication daily, his participation at school has improved significantly and his confidence has grown. Kai’s overall mental health and motivation have shifted, he is enjoying school, opening up at home and interacting with members of the household.
It’s obvious Kai is now feeling like part of the family, feeling safe and beginning to thrive.
With a new outlook on life, Kai now talks about his future and plans for his life beyond 18. He is keen to obtain his learner’s permit so his carers can teach him to drive.
Recently Kai celebrated his 16th birthday and, this once shy, self-secluding young man was showered with gifts, cards, and birthday well wishes. He got to enjoy a birthday pizza night, thanks to the OzChild Thriving Families fund. A party with gifts and a cake was something Kai had not experienced before.
The smile on Kai’s face said it all, this young man was finally coming alive!
It really is incredible to witness such a difference as a young person begins to trust, learns to share, and starts to look forward to a life they once could only ever have imagined.
Stories like this remind us of the incredible difference OzChild carers make and the commitment they have to see children and young people thrive, they really are superheroes!
*Names have been changed to protect identities
Could you care? Why not take the first step today, join us at an information session and find out more about becoming a foster carer.
Every 45 minutes a child enters the out-of-home care system in Australia. The sad reality is the number of children and young people needing care is not slowing down and the number of people signing up to become carers is falling short. Could you care?
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