Team Olive Branch went to watch Instant Family at the Cinemas after work on Friday. The film is all about an American couple who decide to foster children as they have space in their home.
The film is a comedy drama so there are plenty of laughs to be had throughout the film. Having said that, we found it approached the more sensitive topics appropriately as there are some really emotional scenes which had us all in tears. Olive Branch Staff were crying and laughing through out. It really was a roller coaster of emotions.
Although the film is based in America, there are quite a lot of things we could relate to. For example, the different behaviours and personalities within children, how contact can affect foster children, the impact of loss and separation on a child especially an elder child, the frustrations of foster parents trying to engage with children in their care.
Apart from enjoying the comical side to the movie, there were a few lessons our staff took from it:
1- Always look at things from a foster parent’s perspective as they are living with their foster child and are experiencing the ups and downs of fostering on a daily basis. Foster parents go through so many emotions on their journey into fostering and we must always keep in mind that they are the real heroes within fostering and it is our duty to support them to the best of our abilities.
2- The problems and behaviours that foster children present are normal, given their circumstances. Sometimes, we may think that only we experience certain issues but the film showed us that fostering is difficult and comes with its own set of challenges that are to be expected. There were so many scenes that we could relate to. It helped us to understand that all foster children (regardless of country) are fighting their own battles and we must try to see things from their perspective in order to support them as best we can.
Olive Branch Fostering have also offered all of our foster families to go and watch the film for free and we’re looking forward to getting their feedback too!