Anthony and Paulette Catanzariti began their new family when they got a knock on the door from seven-year-old foster child Henry*.
It happened one year ago, but Anthony remembers it like it was yesterday.
"It was a Tuesday. I was sitting on the back porch reading the paper when I got the knock on the door," Anthony recalls.
"He arrived on the front door with a fishing rod and said 'Hi, I'm Henry'."
Henry, it turned out, loved fishing. However since neither Anthony nor Paulette knew the first thing about fishing it became one of the many skills the two of them had to learn on the path to becoming parents.
Paulette took the boy out fishing one day and he caught a carp that was bigger than anything he'd ever caught in his life.
"It was flipping flopping around and he had no idea what to do with it and neither did I. We were standing over this thing going - 'what do we do!? what do we do!?'" she said, laughing at the memory.
"It's something I never imagined I would be doing, but it's all part of the fun."
Neither of them had children before, and so they had a steep learning curve to becoming first-time parents.
It was also Henry's first time living with a long-term foster family, after having gone through a history of trauma and neglect in his past life.
Anthony and Paulette say it's been a bit of a rocky road at times, but one year on the three of them are still together as one family despite the occasional stumbling block.
"The highs are really high and the lows can get really quite low; it's really no different to any other parent," Paulette said.
"We just want to make sure that he understands that we're here for him no matter what the situation is, and we want to make sure he knows that he's loved."
Now Anthony and Paulette are urging others to consider becoming foster carers themselves to help children like Henry find a family.
The two of them became foster carers through Caresouth Griffith, and those interested in finding out more can call their office on 1300 554 260 or head to caresouth.org.au
The foster child's name has been changed to protect his identity.
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