Lauren moved around several times to different foster placements and describes the experience as overwhelming because it was sometimes hard to settle. After seven years, Lauren moved to her forever home with Action for Children foster carers, Derrick and Sue at the age of eleven.

Now twenty, Lauren is in her second year of her music performance degree and credits the stability and support that she had in foster care for her sense of adventure and confidence to explore her dream of becoming a songwriter.

Before I came to live with Derrick and Sue, I had moved around foster homes a few times. It was hard to understand why it was the right thing to do, but in hindsight, I wasn’t living with the right foster carers at the time.
Lauren - Care leaver

“As soon as I arrived at Derrick and Sue’s I felt really comfortable, they took an interest in all my hobbies and really made an effort to make me part of their family.

“They have always nurtured me. I’m really into gymnastics, which Derrick and Sue noticed so they quickly arranged for me to join a gymnastics club – I was so happy and excited to be doing something that I loved. I grew in confidence every time that I went and soon became part of the squad that competed locally. Years later, I now teach other eager young people the basics of gymnastics.

“It wasn’t until the age of thirteen that I started to get interested in music. Again, Derrick and Sue noticed my passion and arranged for me to take singing lessons, at the age of fourteen I performed in front of them for the first time. They were so proud – Sue even cried.

“My love of music has lead me to do my music performance degree at university. If it wasn’t for the love and support that Derrick and Sue provided I wouldn’t have even thought about doing further education – from my experience not a lot of foster children go that far.

I am the woman I am today because of Derrick and Sue! They are always there for advice, helped me grow in confidence and helped me become independent.

“I don’t know what will happen after uni, but I’m not overwhelmed by that prospect. I’ll take each day as it comes – it’s going to be hard work trying to realise my dream but I know that Derrick and Sue will be there to support me all the way.”

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