Something missing at this special time of year? Fill the space in your home and your heart and foster with us.

Published: 01 Dec 2017

Hertfordshire County Council is calling on parents of young people who have left home to consider whether fostering might be the way to fill the extra space in their homes and their hearts.


In Hertfordshire there are just over 835 children and young people in care and many live with Hertfordshire’s foster carers.  Each month, we receive an average of 55 requests for new foster placements, with more requests to place older children (aged 10+), sibling groups and those with more complex needs. 


Empty nesters potentially make great foster carers because they’ve often already got the skills and experience needed to look after children and teenagers, whether this is for a short term or longer term period.


Jacqueline, 50, from Stevenage, who is currently fostering three children, including a pair of siblings said: “My husband and I were short term foster carers for a few years before we decided to do it long-term. The siblings we were looking after were unable to find a home together and we wanted to try our best to keep them united. Our son who was at university at the time, talked us into considering long term fostering and gave up his room to make this possible.


“Christmas can be a difficult time when your children are away. But sharing your home and heart with someone else makes it special. Some of the children we fostered had never celebrated Christmas. Simply sharing a meal with them, seeing the smiles on their faces, sharing a sense of belonging and a place they can call home, even for a short time, was magical. To me that truly is the spirit of Christmas.


Parents of young people who have left home may feel that now might be the right time to do something new and different in their own family lives.


Teresa Heritage, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “Christmas is a wonderful time for families, but when your own grown up children have moved on, it might feel like something is missing. Becoming a foster carer can fill that gap and at the same time, help provide a child with the security and stability they desperately need”.

“All children and young people need a loving and caring environment in which to grow and thrive. It is our aim in Hertfordshire to ensure that everyone gets the best start in life possible so we need our residents to help us transform the lives of children and young people.

If there are any of our residents who can offer a comfortable, safe and loving home, we would love to hear from them.  Fostering isn’t easy, but it’s truly rewarding and can make a huge difference to the lives of children in care.”

Anyone who fosters with Hertfordshire County Council can expect unrivalled support. If you are interested in fostering with us, we’ll be there to guide you through the process, every step of the way. For more information visit