What is fostering?
Our foster carers look after children and young people who are temporarily or permanently unable to live with their birth families. Our carers are trained and supported to give vulnerable children a safe, stable, caring home. Your fostering role is all about giving a child a secure place to stay and making sure they’re well looked after.
Through our application and training process, you will find out more about the fostering options available to you. Together we will look at the type of fostering that suits you best.
Types of fostering
- Emergency and Short term fostering
A child(ren) or young person will be with you for a relatively short time, days or months at the most. These interim placements allow time to return a child(ren) or young person to their own family or to find a suitable long-term placement.
- Long term fostering
Becoming a part of your family, a child(ren) or young person could be with you for months or even years. In the event they cannot return to their birth family, they may stay with you until they’re 18 or older. These placements are sometimes preferable to adoption if the birth family are still involved.
- Respite fostering
Providing a break for foster or birth families, you could offer a child or young person a home on a very short-term basis. This could be an overnight stay, a weekend or a week or two.
- Parent and child fostering
Offering support and guidance to help develop parenting skills, you will offer a child and parent/s a home. These placements usually last around 12 weeks. The assessment process you support may help to keep families together.
- Specialist fostering
Some children and young people need additional support from a family, and other professionals, as a result of their high level of physical and/or emotional needs. This usually requires foster carers to work as part of a team of other professionals, while caring for these children or young people in the foster home.
What are the children like?
The children and young people our carers support are from a diverse range of backgrounds. It is often not safe for these children to remain at home with their birth parents or families. Depending on the circumstances this could be a short term, or longer-term arrangement.
The children we look after have different needs depending on their early experiences. Every child is different so we take great care placing children, carefully managing placements to make sure you feel you have the skills and experience to offer the level of support required. Every placement will be discussed with you in detail. Once you know more about their particular circumstances, you can make an informed decision about your capacity to care for the child.