17 May 2018

Fostering – ‘it keeps you young’

Why not mark national Foster Care Fortnight by finding out more about how you could help a child in need?

Brighton & Hove City Council’s fostering team is holding its next information event on Tuesday 22 May from 7-9pm at Sussex County Cricket Club, Eaton Rd, Hove BN3 3AN.

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

Liz and Martin – who feature in our video above – became foster carers after Martin took early retirement. Carers can choose which age groups they foster, and Liz and Martin prefer fostering teenagers.

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 said: “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 added: “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.”

At the information event at the cricket ground the fostering team will provide refreshments and a free parking permit. If you'd like to come along, or if you can’t come but still want to know more about fostering, please:

  • Phone 01273 295444 for a friendly chat
  • Email fosteringrecruitment@brighton-hove.gov.uk
  • Visit www.fosteringinbrightonandhove.org.uk
  • Visit our Fostering for Brighton & Hove Facebook page
  • Visit Twitter @BHCC_foster

People from all sections of the community can be foster carers. You can be single or a couple, straight or gay, 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 a fantastic level of 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.