General News

Fostering keeps you young

Besi Besemar May 21, 2018

Find out more about how you could help a child in need during National Foster Care Fortnight.

Martin and Liz
Martin and Liz

BRIGHTON & Hove City Council’s fostering team is holding an information event tomorrow, Tuesday May 22 from 7-9pm at Sussex County Cricket Club, Eaton Rd, Hove.

It’s a chance to find out what fostering involves, whether you are eligible to foster and how the assessment process works. You’ll also hear from and meet some of the council’s foster carers.

Liz and Martin became foster carers after Martin took early retirement. In the following video they talk about why they enjoy fostering teenagers and the support they’ve had from the council’s fostering team:

Liz said: “It keeps you young, having teenagers. You have to have a love for children and a good sense of humour, and you have to be a people person.

“We’ve really had some laughs. I think it’s about getting to know them as individuals and treating them as though they’re part of the family.

“The support we’ve had from the council has been brilliant. We’ve got the most wonderful social worker. She keeps in contact with us, we have regular meetings, and she really understands us as a couple.”

Martin added: “Teenagers are really interesting. They’ve got ideas that make you sit up and think ‘maybe they are right – and maybe I’m stuck in my ways’. And it’s refreshing.

“Fostering stops you vegetating. You’re physically and mentally active, and that is something that fits into my way of life. It fulfils my needs as much as the children’s needs.”

Liz continued: “It’s got its challenges but on the whole it’s really good fun to foster. And I’m not just saying that as a cliché. I have really, really enjoyed it.”

Refreshments and a free parking permit will be provided at the information event at the cricket ground.

If you’d like to go along, or if you can’t go, but still want to know more about fostering: 

Phone: 01273 295444 for a friendly chat

People from all sections of the community can be foster carers. You can be single or a couple, straight or LGBT+, old or young, with or without your own children. You don’t need to be married. You can own your own home or be renting.

The council’s fostering team offers you full support – there’s someone at the end of a phone line 24-7, so you’re never alone.

As a foster carer with the council you’ll also be part of a vibrant fostering community. There are support groups to help you meet other foster carers for friendship, advice and support and you will be offered regular training sessions.

The council’s fostering team also provides holiday activities for foster children as well as your own children providing the children with a treat – and you with a break.

Fostering attracts generous financial allowances and can offer you the chance to develop new and career-enhancing skills.