6 March, 2015


Foster carers Margaret and Wayne Read.

Twenty years ago, Margaret Read, of Killcare, saw an ad in the paper calling for foster carers for Barnardos Australia.

She thought it was something that could suit her family and since then, she and husband, Wayne, have opened their home to more than 20 children.

“At the time, our three daughters were teenagers and we decided as a family it was something we would like to do,” Mrs Read said.

“We have always been children people.

“If you didn’t love children, you wouldn’t do it because they can drive you mad at times.”

After their training, the Reads started offering respite weekend emergency care while they were both working and moved on to permanent care and, in more recent years, “intake” care, which involves looking after children until a permanent home can be found for them.

“Often the children we care for have suffered a lot of trauma, grief and loss, and it is very important for them to feel settled and know their needs are being considered,” Mrs Read said.

Barnardos Australia recruitment and support manager for the Central Coast and the Hunter Helen Killen said “intake carers provided short-term care for between six months and two years while permanent homes were found for children”.

How to help
WHAT: Barnardos Central Coast Find-A-Family information night. The organisation is looking for more “intake” carers.
WHEN: Thursday, March 26, 6.30-8pm
WHERE: Park Plaza, 131-135, Henry Parry Drive, Gosford
RSVP: Phone 4324 9411 or email snash@barnardos.org.au

(This article was first published in the Central Coast Express-Adovcate and was written by Terry Collins.)