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If you suspect a child is at risk of harm, please call The Contact Centre on 01744676767

Fostering/Private Fostering

Foster Care v's Private Foster Care

Being a Foster Carer and being a Private Foster Carer are actually two separate roles. Please see below for a description of both.

Foster Care

Foster carers are child care experts working alongside a team of professionals from the Local Authority providing children with the highest standard of foster care.

Foster care is a way of offering children and young people a home while their own family are unable to look after them. This can be for a variety of reasons, from temporary illness to issues such as abuse within their home or the death of a primary carer.

Foster Care is often a temporary arrangement, and many fostered children eventually have the opportunity to return to their own families. Children who cannot return home but still want to stay in touch with their families often live in long-term foster care. Children who live in Foster Care can also be referred to as Looked After Children (LAC)

What does it mean to become a Foster Carer?

Private Foster Care

Private fostering is when a child under the age of 16 (under 18 if disabled) has a private care arrangement between their parent and a carer. A private fostering carer is someone who is not their parent or a 'close relative'. The private arrangement can be for 28 days or more. Close relatives are defined as step-parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, uncles or aunts (whether of full blood, half blood or marriage/affinity).

There is a legal requirement that the Local Authority must be informed as they have a duty of care to ensure that the welfare of the child is being satisfactorily safeguarded and promoted.

The following leaflets provide further information on the role of private fostering:

PRIVATE FOSTERING: Information and Advice for children and young people living with a host family

PRIVATE FOSTERING: Information and Advice for parents

PRIVATE FOSTERING: Looking After Someone Else's Child? Find out if you are a private foster carer.

PRIVATE FOSTERING: A Guide for Children & Young People



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