Foster dad Raymond Loh: 4 kids and counting...
THE Lohs motivation to be foster parents is simple:
“My motivation is just to help the children. There are lots of children in children’s homes. A home is a better place.” - Raymond Loh, 48, Administrative Manager, a foster father since 2004
Desire to share a caring family environment
To see children grow in a home environment and not a residential home. That desire sparked in Raymond and his wife Lynette the decision to be foster parents.
It was also Lynette’s voluntary experience in a children’s home in 2003 that made the couple more aware of the circumstances of children who are unable to live with their families. The growing desire became a conviction.
The Lohs fostered their first child through a convent for a year. Jolene*, now 14 years old, still sends them a card every year. Three other children have since passed through the Lohs’ doors through the MCYS Fostering scheme, including a chubby baby who could not stop crying.
Commitment is key
The joy in Raymond’s voice was unmistakable as he recalled the 10-month-old baby’s two-day stay. He shared how he had to bring baby Dan* out for a midnight stroll for an hour in the neighbourhood.
As much as fostering comes with its fulfilments, Raymond is also quick to add that it is not without its challenges. A bittersweet learning experience is how he would describe his journey so far. Fulfilling the idealistic aspiration to help children and their families from difficult backgrounds can be sweet, yet he thinks it can be a struggle requiring
much forbearance, particularly when the children misbehave; sometimes resulting from what they have been through.
Commitment to the cause is what keeps Raymond, Lynette and their son Russell going in this journey. But the burden is lighter with the involvement and support of the extended family. “Definitely a family effort” concludes Raymond, “and more families should be doing it!”
* The names of the children have been changed.
Reflection pointers for fathers
- To be able to establish a strong, firm and nurturing relationship with children is the essence of fathering. The warmth of our homes help us to connect with children. Is our home a welcoming place for children?
- It is good that our homes are functional and clean, but it is better if our home is one that our children feel loved & welcome; most residential institutions are relatively clean and functional but it lacks the human touch that parents provide.
- Look out for the next two sharing in the coming weeks by two foster fathers. They will share their journey in caring for their foster children. We would like you to read these stories as a way to honour these men who choose to share their lives and homes with children in need.
Action pointers for fathers
- Do some re-decoration to your house this holiday season with your children; paint, re arrange furniture or put up some ornaments. Let your children have the choice of colour of paint or how they want to do up their rooms.
- If you do celebrate Christmas, get your children to help to put up the Christmas decorations.
Want to know more about fostering or how you can contribute to the cause?
Then call 6354 8799 or visit MCYS.
Other articles in "Fathering Matters"