They say that things happen when you least expect them to and being a Foster Carer it really happens constantly. We have two girls in placement who are ‘left over’ from a previous placement of four. The other two were ‘snatched away’ by a Mother who just wanted to regain control of the children that she gave up as she couldn’t cope. She had contacted the children without us knowing and by basically getting the children to lie to us. She also asked the parents of the children’s friends to lie to us in order to hide her plans. When we sent the two girls off to school it seemed like a normal day. Having seen the girls off we decided to go shopping and grab a coffee.

We sat and were talking about plans and booking holidays when my phone rang. I answered and it was the girl’s school, were the girls off sick? My heart sank straight away as I realised what was happening. My wife looked at me and could tell what had happened without me telling her. We said no they were not sick and the caller put us through to our point of contact at the school, who was fully aware of the girl’s history. She said she would make some enquiries and get back to us. We called our Supervising Social Worker (SSW) and then the girl’s Social Worker, to make them aware of what was happening. They were both horrified and asked to be kept posted with what the school came back with. The Social Worker was going to liaise with the local Police to organise a visit to Mum’s home to see if the children were there and, if so, whether they were safe and well. There was nothing really we could do so we carried on with our morning.

At lunch time we received a call from the school saying that one of the eldest girl’s friends had confirmed to us what had happened. It pretty much followed the pattern of the other two’s disappearance. The girl said that the Mum of our Foster Placements had befriended her Mum after being told stories about the girls, and their siblings, who were snatched away in the middle of the night by Social Services, for no reason, and they were being really ‘badly treated’ by us as their Foster Carers. This was the reason that she was so ‘desperate’ to get the girls back home. Of course the school were aware of the actual situation but had not told the friend was had really happened. So we updated the SSW and SW to keep them in the picture. There had been a delay in the Police visiting due to how busy they were but we received an update shortly before our own children arrived home.

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