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Everyone was amazing and supportive - Marilyn and Malcolm

Neils Anglia 10 Years

Marilyn worked within children’s services and wanted to help more children, so she came out of work to foster full time. Malcolm was in the forces, then worked in a college with children with special needs. They are now both retired and full-time foster carers.

What made you want to foster?

Our three boys had grown up and moved out, and the house felt empty, so we decided we wanted to offer a caring and safe place for a child in need of care.

Why did you choose Nexus? 

Nexus Fostering was recommended to us by someone we knew. The process was quick and smooth, from the team coming to see us initially to being approved. We were with another agency before Nexus Fostering, so they used some of the information from our previous Form F Assessment, which made the process quicker. We were very impressed. Everyone was amazing and supportive during the whole transferring process.

Everyone was amazing and supportive
What do you think makes a great foster carer?

Having empathy is vital. You also need to be flexible and have a lot of time to give the children. You need to be available for them sometimes at short notice. Be a good advocate and support them.  

What support did you receive from the Nexus team?

We have an excellent Supervising Social Worker, Zoe. She is consistent and always there for us. It’s the same for the wider Nexus team. They are there for us whenever we need them.

Can you share the highs and lows of your carer journey?

The highs are when a child succeeds in anything, even if it’s small, for instance, when they hold your hand for the first time. The low is when you are at the contact, and you see how a parent treats you or their child, or you feel rejected by a child in your care. It’s hard for them to realise the good we are trying to do for them, but they want their parents at the end of the day. Also, knowing that maybe that child will leave at some point is sad, but that’s the role of a Foster Carer.

What advice would you give to people thinking about becoming a foster carer?
  • We believe you should never remove a child’s belongings or ground them – it’s our personal choice, and we believe it works
  • Put boundaries in place. Children benefit from knowing what they can and can’t do and keeping it consistent.
  • Reassure the child that you know you are not their parents but are there to look after them.
  • Have coping mechanisms, such as a comfort blanket for the child as reassurance.
  • Take each day as it comes and be happy with each success, even if it is small. Let the children know you are happy with them. It goes a long way.
  • Be prepared for friends coming over for sleepovers!


If you want to find out more about fostering with Nexus Fostering then follow the link - Why Foster? | Nexus Fostering


Fostering stories


  • Foster Carer

Date published

05 March 2023

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