Last year, Alfie’s Christmas wish was to have a Middlesbrough foster family who would love and care for him. Life has changed a lot for Alfie over the last 12 months.

Alfie has had a difficult start in life, trusting adults has not been easy for him and giving a grown up a cuddle was very hard for Alfie. Antony and Emily, Alfie’s foster family, say that after more than 4 months of high fiving Alfie finally gave Emily the briefest of hugs before running into school last week.

Alfie has been able to return to his school, teachers and friends from before his separation and everyone has noticed how he is growing in confidence in class and has been known on occasion to put his hand up to answer a question. Something that was unheard of before. They say that Alfie is willing to speak, particularly at share time on a Monday morning, where the class share what they did over the weekend.

One Monday recently he spoke for minutes about the weekends match and the goal Britt Assombalonga, his favourite player, had scored!

Going to school is really important to Alfie, he now knows more words and reading at home every day has really helped him with his English too. His favourite book is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and he now borrows books when he goes to the library for LEGO club. His teachers are giving him lots of support and say that if he keeps trying hard he will have caught up with the other children by the summer.

Alfie loved his birthday this year. For the first time ever he had a small party with his new family and his big brother came too which made his day. He is still talking about how yummy his birthday cake was.

Alfie still takes Patch everywhere with him. Patch cheers him on when he is playing football with Antony and Emily in the garden.

Alfie is really excited about Christmas this year, all of his new family are coming for Christmas Dinner (but he isn’t sure if he will try pigs in blankets!) and his brother is joining them for the afternoon.

When asked if Santa is coming this year, he looks to Emily for reassurance, who gives him the briefest of nods. That simple gesture transforms Alfie’s face into a smile, and shyly he announces that Santa knows how hard he is trying at school, how he got all of his spellings right this week, and of course where he is living now and that he wants a bike!

If you could help change a child like Alfie’s life, talk to us on 01642 201962 or email fostering@middlesbrough.gov.uk

Last year, Alfie’s Christmas wish was to have a Middlesbrough foster family who would love and care for him. Life has changed a lot for Alfie over the last 12 months.

Boy holding a teddy bear

Alfie’s story, 12 months earlier

Alfie is a caring and sociable eight-year old boy who longs for a family to enjoy movie nights with, like his classmates do.

Alfie is a timid but caring little boy, who is desperately hoping for a foster carer to develop a trusting friendship with. After a difficult start in life he struggles to trust adults, finding it difficult to make eye contact and conversation. Forming a stable bond with an adult is important to Alfie, and when the trust has been achieved, it is incredibly rewarding to see his fantastic sense of humour shine through.

Alfie has a loving personality and is a sociable child, playing well with others and developing friendships at his LEGO after school club. Although Alfie has friends his own age, he prefers to play with older children and looks to them for guidance and comfort since his older brother, whom he loves to stay in contact with, was placed with a different foster family.

Like most young children, Alfie has many hobbies, he loves drawing Pokémon characters, enjoys playing football and is a big fan of Middlesbrough F.C. He would love a foster carer who can play football with him and teach him how to ride a bike, having never had a chance to learn these skills before.

School is very important to Alfie and over the past 12 months he has made great progress. He really enjoys maths and would love a stable homelife where a carer can help him with his English and reading and support him as he continues to learn. When asked what he would like from a foster carer, Alfie’s wish is to have a family who will pick him up on time from school and remember to give him a clean uniform.

Could you foster a child like Alfie? Talk to us on 01642 201962 or email fostering@middlesbrough.gov.uk to find out more.