'Fostering siblings is one of the best things we’ve done in our lives,' say Tring couple

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More than half of sibling groups in Hertfordshire in care have been separated

A Tring couple have shared their delight in caring for multiple siblings under Hertfordshire County Council’s foster service.

Paul and Lorraine consider fostering siblings to be one of the best things they’ve ever done in their lives.

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Hertfordshire County Council is sharing the couple’s story as part of its #KeepUsTogether campaign, which was launched last week.

More than half of sibling groups in Hertfordshire have to be separated – some for personal reasons but mostly because the local authority is not enough carers can take on sibling groups.

Paul said: “When these children come into care and they are on their own, it must be frightening. It eases the burden slightly to have your sisters with you.”

They look after four sisters aged three, seven, eight and 10. Lorraine added: “If they’ve got the hump over something and they can’t talk to you, they can talk to each other. Fostering siblings is the best thing I’ve done.”

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Lorraine and Paul from TringLorraine and Paul from Tring
Lorraine and Paul from Tring

Hertfordshire County Council has created a short film named, All Alone, highlighting what it is like for siblings to be separated.

Currently, the local authority has over 1,000 children in care waiting for suitable foster carers.

It has also released an extended interview with Lorraine and Paul, which can be accessed on YouTube here.

Lorraine said: “We started fostering not really knowing what was involved. We asked if we could take a set of siblings, two girls, which we did. And they’ve now flown the nest.

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"But they’re always in the background, phoning up. And then four girls came along. Again, we were asked ‘would we take them’? And we did.

"We didn’t see a problem with that. Kids come into the system, and we don’t think they should be punished for coming into the system. And they should stay together.

"They are so loyal. They’re there own little family with the four of them but we’re the extended family. We wouldn’t want to be without them.”

Brothers and sisters who are separated in foster care can experience additional feelings of fear and anxiety.