Many Muslims may not realise that by fostering a child they are following a Sunnah of the beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Therefore fostering should be encouraged in the Muslim community to help diversify foster parents in today’s society who want to offer a loving and stable home for a foster child.
There is a staggering number of Muslim children that are placed into care and in urgent need of foster carers that can meet their religious, cultural and emotional needs. It has been reported that in 2016 there were 44 Muslim children who were in need of being placed in care in the borough of Brent (Greater London) however, there were only 4 Muslim foster carers available to assist 1. The situation is one that is dire and has further exacerbated by the refugee crisis that has hit Europe. Many Muslims are unaware that they have the potential to make a huge difference to a child’s life by creating a ‘home’ from home for a child.
Heartbreakingly, conflict in war-affected countries has resulted in a large number of Muslim children being left without anyone to care for them. Many children have walked thousands of miles, watched their parents suffer and even die, arrive in the UK, to strangers speaking a different language, with a different culture, religion and values.
Despite the fact that the UK has a large Muslim population, children are continued to be placed in homes that do not support the child’s religious and cultural needs and this affects the child’s ability to relate and nurture their true identity.
It is very important that there are a diverse range of homes from different backgrounds and faiths that are ready to welcome a foster a child and it is also important for there to be Muslim foster carers to cater for the needs of those children who have been brought up in the Muslim faith and want to be able to relate and practice their religion freely and comfortably.