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Deception Bay foster couple wins volunteer award

By Tanayah Wakefield

A Deception Bay foster couple was honoured at the annual Queensland Child Protection Week Awards ceremony on August 30.

Foster carers, Debbie and Steve Haim received the volunteer award for providing care for more than 20 years.

In addition to raising five children of their own, Debbie and Steve have fostered more than 100 children, including those with complex needs.

Debbie says their fostering journey started unexpectedly 24 years ago.

“My husband and I got into fostering when our church, at the time, were going out in their street van serving drinks and food to the community. We advised the church if they came across any child in need, our door was open. We took on a child soon after and we then contacted her family, who supported her staying with us,” Debbie says.

“Soon after the child was reunited with her family, we received a call advising us that we had put our names down for foster carer training. This confused us as we never did that, but instead had put our names down to get advice and support for the child we had taken in. Despite the confusion and after talking with my husband, we decided to give the training a go.”

Being foster carers for more than two decades has had its ups and downs – especially when the Haims housed between eight and 10 children at one stage – but they say most important part of fostering is knowing they can make a difference in a child’s life.

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