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Types of fostering

Types of fostering

Fostering provides children who cannot live with their parents a secure family life for the period of time that they need it.

 

Being a Foster Carer is an opportunity to make a real difference to a child or young person by offering commitment and security, and a safe, warm and happy family life. 

There are many different types of foster care that you can choose depending on your circumstances , looking after children of different ages and backgrounds, and with a wide range of needs. 

Providing support is ideal for families, couples or single people who work, but still want to make a difference to a child's life. 

  • The care arrangement will usually take place at weekends and school holidays. 
  • You will normally care for a child who is placed with one of our foster carers. 
  • This could because the foster carer needs to attend to a particular family issue, spend one to one time with their birth child, or because having a dedicated family arrangement helps everyone. 
  • It could also be for a child in a residential school who needs some family life.

Short term fostering means providing a child or young person with a place to stay until they can return to their own family, or until it becomes evident that they need a more permanent foster placement or possibly adoptive parents. 

  • Short term fostering is a very important part of the fostering service since many of the children who come into public care need a short term solution to domestic or parental issues which prevent them from living at home for a certain period of time.  
  • A short term foster placement can last from a few days to several months depending on the situation. 
  • A short term foster carer will need to be available to respond to urgent or short notice requirements for foster placements.
  • We have foster carers who are couples, single people, gay and straight. We interested in the quality of care you can provide.
  • Emergency foster care is needed for situations where a child needs a foster home urgently, either for a night, for a few days or even longer. 
  • This could occur during the day as well as at night, on weekends and other unexpected times. 
  • The ability to be flexible and adapt to changing circumstances is extremely important. 
  • The ability to build a rapport with a child who is upset, and create a safe, containing feel around them is key. 
  • Children will often remember 'the nice lady's house' they went to at a time of real distress for years afterwards.

Known as supported lodgings, this type of care is for an older young person for up to two years. 

  • This meets a young person's need for security, stability and confidence needed to make the move towards independence.
  • The carer family doesn't have parental responsibility for the young person, but is asked to help nurture skills such as cooking, cleaning and budgeting as well as encouraging the young people into or to remain in education or employment.
  • Our expectations of this carer are different than 'foster carers', but the ability to be open, warm and caring are the same.

Known as parent and child fostering, these placements are for young people under the age of 18 who are parents themselves. 

  • The parent or parents are placed with their child so that the foster carer can provide support. 
  • The young mums have often been neglected themselves as children and need a level of warmth, care and support.
  • These specialist placements can help young parents develop the confidence to take on the responsibility of caring for their children. 
  • They provide a positive alternative to residential assessment care, which can be expensive and isolating, and offer young families the best chance of staying together.

Some children and young people who need foster care have complex needs. 

  • Career foster care is a full time role and has some specific requirements. Our children with complex needs have experienced trauma, neglect or loss and their behaviours are a 'window in' to their level of need. 
  • Career carers will be supported more intensively by social workers and psychologists. 
  • Research tells us children who have had these experiences need high quality care.

Contact us to find out more

The short break carers scheme links children with disabilities and their families with carers who can provide them with regular short breaks

Also known as connected persons, this is care provided by a relative or person already known to the child. These carers go through the same assessment process as mainstream foster carers and are provided with support and training.

This is known as private fostering and is a private arrangement made for a child who is under 16 (18 if they have a disability) to live with someone who is not a close relative. 

Many people do not realise they are privately fostering, but if you have been looking after a child who is not a close relative for more than 28 days, you must notify us. We have a duty to assess the care arrangements and offer support if needed.


 Quote start Sometimes, all you need is an adult who actually understands you, will back you up when you are right, and tell you when you are wrong.

Contact us

0118 974 6204
fostering@wokingham.gov.uk