SI Sevenoaks club member Tina Fenner has been fostering desperate asylum-seeking children for over 20 years; she has fostered more than 30 youngsters during that time, some for 2 years or more. The children, girls as well as boys, often arrived at Tina’s home traumatised and scared, sometimes with no reading or writing skills and no spoken English. Tina has provided sanctuary, care and support including teaching them literacy skills and has seen her young charges go on to successful and worthwhile lives. One young woman, who had been trafficked, needed to stay with Tina beyond her 18th birthday, which the authorities permitted, to enable her to overcome the trauma. Tina is still in touch with her as she is with many of the others. Here she is redecorating one of the bedrooms in her Sevenoaks home for the next young asylum seeker.
Tina only joined the Sevenoaks Club earlier this year and we had not been aware of the extent of her work and the amazing devotion she has given to these ‘lost children’! It was a great surprise for us when Penelope Robbins, who is our Region Programme Action Officer as well as a valued member and past Club President, alerted us to watch the BBC’s South East news item on 6th July 2023 where Tina was featured! There were also articles in the Sevenoaks Chronicle and on the internet. We are truly privileged to have Tina – and we are very proud of her!
Programme Action Officer