What is fostering?
Fostering is the act of providing family life for children who are unable to live with their own parents.
It’s common use to provide temporary care for their children while parents get help sorting out problems or to help children through a difficult period in their lives.
Frequently, children will return home following the resolve of the issue that will have driven them into coming into foster care.
Are there different types of fostering?
A few different types of foster care can include:
Emergency – children will need somewhere safe to stay for a few nights.
Short-term – carers will look after children for a few weeks or months, while plans are put in place for the child’s future.
Short-breaks – children with disabilities or behavioural difficulties can spend a short stay on a pre-planned, regular basis with a new family while their parents or existing foster parents have a short break for themselves.
Long-term and permanent – there are some children/young people who cannot return to their own families who do not want to be adopted. This is more common with older children or those who have continuous contact with their relatives. These children will live with their long-term foster carers until they reach adulthood and are ready to live independently.
Private fostering – parents will make arrangements for the child to stay with someone who isn’t a close relative and has no parental duties, and the child would stay with them for longer than 27 days. The private arrangement does have rules about how the child is cared for and the local authorities will come in and check on the child’s wellbeing.