8th September 2023
As a widow with 2 young children and no family support network his services have been invaluable to us.
Damien started caring for Mateo and Maia about 3 months after the death of my husband when they were just 3 and 5 years old. Having watched their Dad go from healthy to dying 6 months later after a very quick but hard fought battle with brain cancer was incredibly hard for them.
Their behaviours escalated, they struggled with emotional regulation and they really struggled being away from me, terrified that I would leave too, but as a full time working mother, I had no choice.
Leaving them that first time with someone else was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. It wasn’t pretty, but we got through it. Damian was so great with them right from the start, understanding their trauma, being both firm and gentle, loving and supportive through melt downs and tantrums, defiance and crazy moments.
2 years on, our life is very different. We are healing, the kids are happy and healthy and Damien remains a massive part of our life. The kids love him. I sometime get home early and find Maia curled up on his lap watching Barbie or Frozen (the man must have watched them a 100o times by now!) and Mateo likes to show or tell him what he’s doing at school or rugby. Instead of trauma, he supports my youngest through ADHD, always patient, but firm with her when she needs it and always ready with a hug or cuddle when she struggles emotionally.
Having no family here, knowing that there is someone who cares for my kids when I can’t be there, someone that I can trust, is wonderful. It enables me to do a very busy and full-on job and give it my full attention, secure in the knowledge that my kids are safe, well cared for and usually having fun, whilst I am helping others. It has also meant I am able to have a social life, spend time with friends and even date, without feeling guilty about being away from the kids.
They have such fun with Damien. He sponsors them for events at school, their rugby team, he takes them out to places and they love it when he also cares for their friends too. I think they go out to dinner more times than I do. I couldn’t ask for better support or a better person to care for my kids. He is super friendly and very flexible and will always try his best to be available when you need him. I have recommended him to lots of friends who now also use his services and would not hesitate to recommend him to anyone who needs a caring, confident and experienced person to care for their kids.
Sarah Whitaker, Union Official
Mother to Mateo (Yr. 2) & Maia (PP), Craigie Heights Primary School