Welcome to Fostering People Too
Whether you’re a prospective foster carer looking for more information, a local authority in search of the perfect partner, or a job-seeker interested in employment in social care, our site should give you a real feel for fostering with FP2 .
Think about fostering. It may be the best thing you ever do!
Fostering in perspective
There are about 72,000 children and young people in care in England and Wales. They are currently described as “Looked After” and it’s foster carers that do the looking after in the majority of cases.
The law encourages local authorities to work in partnership with parents and where safe to do so support is given to families to avoid the child or young person coming into care. Wider family members, such as grandparents may be approached to see if they can help and possibly care for the child. Where there are significant concerns for the safety and welfare of the child the local authority may need to take more formal action in partnership with other agencies such as health, police etc.
What is fostering?
Fostering is about caring for and looking after children and young people in your own home whilst their own parents are unable to look after them.
The majority of children and young people who come into care will eventually return to their birth family. Where this is not possible the local authority will find a permanent new home through long term fostering or adoption
The ideal foster home is one which provides a child or young person with a safe supportive environment that enables the child to move forward with confidence.
Different types of fostering
The length of time a child may be with you will depend on individual circumstances. It is often difficult to be precise about the duration of the placement until the local authority has assessed whether a return home for the child is safe and sustainable The following will give you some idea of the different types of fostering that FP2 can offer:
- Emergency. This could be for one night or several days until the local authority has assessed the situation at home. Sometimes an emergency placement can develop into:
- Short term. Unless for a pre-determined period this is likely to be between one and eighteen months until clear plans are made and implemented. The child may be reunited with his parents or wider family or if this is not possible you may be asked to support the child towards a permanent new family placement.
- Longer term. When it becomes clear that the child cannot return home and wider family resources have been exhausted then an adoptive or longer term foster placement will be sought. Carers providing a long term placement for a child will provide care and support until the young person is 18 years of age.
- Respite. This is normally for a pre-determined period and may form part of an ongoing support programme to help parents or carers re-charge their batteries. Respite may include a weekend break with perhaps a longer stay during school holiday times
- Siblings. It is really important to keep brothers and sisters together where possible. Some of our foster carers provide placements for family groups from two to seven! Before looking at long term plans for a sibling group, a sibling assessment normally takes place to consider if the children need to be placed together or individually. Sometimes their individual needs will outweigh the need to live together.
- Parent and child. This is normally a short term placement whilst a parenting assessment is completed. The foster carer will play an important part in this process.