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Foster carers of forty years, Eileen and Ian, reflect on their fostering journey

Ian and Eileen

Beginning their fostering career in 1976, Eileen and Ian Lindley have welcomed around 80 children and young people to share their home, many of whom are now a part of their extended family and continue to keep in touch.

Speaking about their experiences, Eileen said: “All of the children we have cared for have been unique, many with heart wrenching experiences blighting their young lives; caring for them has been both challenging and rewarding.”

“Through our care and guidance they have gone on to live fulfilled and happy lives, they’ve contributed greatly to society and both Ian and I are proud and humbled by what we have helped them to achieve.”

The pair, who are in their seventies, have dedicated last decade specifically to caring for children who have either fled to Doncaster from areas of international conflict or have been trafficked to the UK to be exploited.

This selfless work led to Ian being rewarded with an MBE in the Queen’s 2017 winter honours. Ian said: “Supporting young people through trauma and to overcome and deal with the horrific circumstances they have been subject to is a very worthy cause and one we are keen to carry on doing so for as long as the young people need us.”

Eileen added: “We are now approaching our retirement, we find ourselves surrounded by the young people we have cared for and their children.”

“This has been a truly wonderful lifetime in our service to the children we have cared for. They have touched our lives and we have touched theirs. An incredibly rewarding experience.”

If you’re thinking about becoming a foster carer then get in touch with our friendly, local team.

People from all backgrounds can make great carers. You can apply regardless of your marital status, sexuality, race or religion. Many of the children have been through difficult times, so carers need to be great listeners and have plenty of patience.

Call on 0808 129 2600, drop in to the Blue Building, Doncaster High Street, DN1 1DE or visit our website to find out more: