Caring for foster children 'keeps you young'

Foster carers Martin and Liz
Foster carers Martin and Liz

Foster carers Liz and Martin highlighted the benefits of helping children in need ahead of a fostering information event next week.

The pair became foster carers after Martin took early retirement.

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.”

The fostering team at Brighton and Hove City Council is holding an information event on Tuesday (May 22) at Sussex County Cricket Club in Hove from 7pm to 9pm.

The council said its a chance to find out what fostering involves, whether you'll be eligible and how the assessment process works.

To find out more about fostering, visit: www.fosteringinbrightonandhove.org.uk