Foster child ‘T’ talks about her time with St John’s Ambulance Cadets for Child Safety Week. 

Martin and Julie my foster carers encouraged me to join St Johns Ambulance Cadets after trying various sporty activities which isn’t really me 🙂

Although at first I was really, really nervous and didn’t think I would enjoy it I did.

It is a small group and I was allowed to do as much as I felt confident with. My instructor is nice and friendly and very patient. The uniform is green and froglike but ok.

I have passed my Life Skills Level 1 and working towards my level 2. We get go to events as support such carnivals, rugby matches and shows.

I have learnt basic life skills and what to do in an emergency, how to do resuscitation and more, which is important for everyone to know!

Before I came into foster care I felt unable to do anything about my life but this has given me confidence and power and will help me in the future.

T 🙂


Our siblings can be the first and longest relationships in our families and in our lives. For siblings in care together, the knowledge that they are able to stay together with brothers and sisters that they love has a positive effect on their outcome in later life.

Liz and Martin King recently started fostering and have been fostering a sibling group of 4 (aged 5-14) for the past 5 months, and while it can be hard work it is extremely rewarding.

Liz and Martin said:

‘We have seen them change from frightened and disoriented children to being happy and settled members of our family. They were already a very strong little unit when they came to us and that sibling bond means that they can support and comfort each other when things are tough. They understand what they have each been through, whereas we can only imagine.

It is such a delight to see them thrive, hear them laugh and hear such glowing school reports particularly in terms of the positive changes in them since being fostered.

They are already very much part of our family and we hope that they will stay with us so that we can watch them into adulthood and realise their dreams as we have done with our own 4 children.’


Community Psychiatric Nurse, Team Leader – Georgina Cadby-Fisher, who has been working in mental health for 3 years has written an advice piece on how to spot the signs and provide support to somebody who is self-harming.

Georgina Cadby Fisher

What is self-harm?

So what do we mean by Self-harm? Self-harm is when you hurt yourself as a way of dealing with very difficult feelings, painful memories or overwhelming situations and experiences that feel out of control. It can be the thing people turn to when they feel they have no other option.

Signs of potential self-harm:

There are not always obvious signs that somebody close to you may have begun self harming. But there are some signs you can look out for:

  • Unexplained cuts, bruises or burns
  • Wearing more clothing than usual to cover any evidence of self harm
  • Changes in eating or becoming secretive/obsessive about eating
  • Unusual weight loss or weight gain

So why do people self-harm?

There are many reasons people self-harm, such as being bullied, stress, bereavement, experiencing a form of abuse whether that’s sexual, physical or emotional.

  • If people are angry, self-harming can be a form of release of pent up anger or emotion
  • Self-harm can be a form of control for people if they feel they have no control over other aspects of their life
  • It can be for psychological reasons such as hearing voices that tell them to do it

Advice for people living with somebody that self-harms

Living with somebody or watching people close to you self harm can be difficult and distressing but there are things you can do to help:


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