A FOSTER carer has shared an inspiring story of how a shy young boy she looked after became a songwriter.

Ida welcomed Josh and his sister into her home in Halton.

The nine-year-old arrived with an internet obsession, was quiet and found it difficult to show his emotions.

Ida encouraged both siblings to try new experiences like sports and music and started to see a massive change in Josh.

As his confidence grew, Josh began to start to write his thoughts, feelings and memories across the four walls of his bedroom.

"While some people may think of writing on the walls as a disaster, I recognised this as a huge breakthrough," said Ida.

"I felt uplifted to see him confidently express himself like that. I see it as him taking ownership of his new room as well as his past and present experiences.

"It is wonderful that the hesitant, quiet boy I first met has shared his thoughts and feelings in such a unique special way.”

Josh even wrote Ida a heartfelt song with lyrics including: "All I've been through in my life and you've done everything you can.

"When I first got here there were stories in my head I couldn't explain. You tried and tried.

"Written in these walls are memories, stories of my life."

Ida approached Halton Council to become a foster carer because she wanted to use her skills and experiences.

Having worked for the NHS for more than 30 years, Ida felt she had a lot to offer and was particularly keen to foster siblings and teenagers.

Like all foster carers with Halton Council, Ida has the support of a supervising social worker and support worker – which she has described as invaluable”

She describes her fostering experience as “magical mayhem” because it is such a voyage of discovery of herself and the children.

Ida added: “I can honestly say that the learning journey I have been through and am still on, has been exhausting and exhilarating.

"I cannot imagine doing anything else but being a foster carer, I love it.”

Josh continues to flourish in Ida’s care and is keen to learn and develop his musical talents.

In recognition of his achievements, Josh has been nominated for an award at Halton Council’s annual children in care celebration in the summer.

During foster care fortnight, Halton Council is running drop in events between 11am and 1pm on May 17 at Halton Lea Library and on May 24 at Costa Coffee in Widnes.

For more dertails call 0800 195 3175 or visit foster4halton.co.uk.