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Interview with Evelyn Marshall, Merton Council foster carer

Merton Council is calling on people to become foster carers and give young people a loving home. We interviewed Evelyn Marshall who has taken that step.

Evelyn Marshall

How long have you been fostering?

My partner and I have been fostering for 20 years. We're currently fostering a 16-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl. In total, we've fostered 30 children with Merton Council.

Why do you foster?

There are so many children who need a loving home and I can offer that as well as being able to support them through a very difficult time. I want to be there for them for the highs as well as the lows.

What support do you get from the council?

Merton's fostering team go above and beyond to support me. They support us through various challenges. They visit monthly and are always there at the end of a phone.

Why do you foster teenagers?

There has been such an increase in the numbers of teenagers coming into care I felt I had to offer stability and support to them. I enjoy listening to them, helping them with their education and helping them to achieve their goals.

What would you say to potential foster carers?

Fostering is very rewarding. But you need to be open minded, adaptable, patient and a good listener.

What are the challenges?

The challenges are always in the beginning when a child comes to stay. They can sometimes be angry and act out because of what has happened to them. We are trained and supported to deal with this.

What is most rewarding about fostering?

I love it when a child comes back to see me and has reached their goals in life.