Nina supports call for more people to become foster parents

A foster mother from north of Nottingham has called for people across the region to open their homes to the region’s vulnerable children and young people.

Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 10:45 am
Updated Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 3:43 pm
Foster carer Nina Severn. Photo: Paul Reddington
Foster carer Nina Severn. Photo: Paul Reddington

Nina Severn, 50, started her fostering career earlier this year and is currently looking after two siblings on a long-term placement which means the children will remain in her care until they can live independently as adults.

Nina first considered fostering in 2011 when her five biological children grew older and started to live more independently.

At that time, Nina came close to fostering but ultimately decided it wasn’t the right moment in her life.

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Seven years later, Nina met a foster carer through work, who told her about Five Rivers Child Care, a fostering agency and social enterprise with an office in Chesterfield.

At the start of 2019, Nina contacted Five Rivers and she and her husband, Alan, started the application process and training programme to become full-time foster carers.

In September, the couple were told they would receive their first placement within the next two months.

Seven weeks later, they welcomed an 11-year-old boy and his ten-year-old sister.

Nina said she decided to foster because she ‘felt alone after my own children moved out and became more independent’.

She recalled: “I missed the busy times and the school runs - the house felt empty.

“I took on a second job but I still felt like something was missing from my life.

“Now, the house is full, and I feel like I have a purpose again.”

In Nottinghamshire, there are currently 600 children in foster care, but a further 550 foster carers are needed across the East Midlands to meet demand and help support vulnerable children and young adults.

People from all walks of life can become foster carers as long as they are over 21 years old.

This includes single people, co-habiting couples, same sex couples and people living in rented accommodation.

The only requirement is a spare room for each foster child.

For more information on foster care contact Five Rivers Child Care on 0345 266 0272 or visit