A FITNESS instructor who has just started her journey as a foster carer is urging more single people to join her as part of a two-week campaign raising awareness of the vital role.
Lisa Holt, of Littlehampton, has told of her experience becoming a foster carer and called on more people in the area to help meet a shortfall of 925 carers in the south-east during Foster Care Fortnight, which started last Monday and ends on Sunday.
The 42-year-old, who was approved as a carer just last month, said: “I felt I had the chance to offer children a safe home and a stable, loving environment and use the skills I had built up in my life and career.
“Combining my skills as a fitness instructor, I bring energy, patience, and communication skills into my role.
“I can provide a good home and want to make a difference to vulnerable young people who need help, support and guidance in their life.”
One of the aims of this year’s campaign, organised by charity The Fostering Network, is to dispel myths about who can and cannot foster.
Initially, Lisa thought she would be turned down as a foster carer.
She said: “I am a single carer and that is why I didn’t do it sooner, because I thought it would be a battle to get through the process with not having a partner as support. But Foster Care Associates (FCA) were so welcoming and it was clear that they want carers from all kinds of backgrounds and with a variety of skill sets.
“People shouldn’t be put off if they are single. There are many single carers, male and female, that I have already met.”
To find out more about fostering, see www.westsussex.gov.uk/fostering or call 0330 222 7775.
For the Lisa’s full story, see this week’s Gazette (Thursday, May 22).