What is fostering

What is fostering?

Foster carers provide a safe and stable home for children and young people who are unable to live with their parents or legal guardians.


Placements can last for days, months, or years and allow children to live in a supportive and caring home environment. People have all sorts of questions about foster care, here are just a few of the most common:

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Am I too old to foster?

There is no upper age limit and as long as you are fit, energetic and healthy, you can apply to be a foster carer.

Watch our video

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What is the difference between fostering and adoption?


Good question. With fostering the legal responsibility remains with the local authority and the birth parents. We work as a team with local authorities, foster carers and social workers to ensure the child is placed in a safe and happy home. With adoption, all legal responsibility for the child is granted to the adoptive parents.

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Am I qualified to be a foster carer?

Being a foster carer is not about qualifications; it’s about your ability to offer a vulnerable young person a stable home to grow up in. So no matter what your relationship status, gender, age, sexual orientation, skin colour, religion, or whether you have children of your own, you can be considered to become a foster carer.

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What kind of children and young people will I foster?

The children and young people placed with our foster carers are from a wide range of backgrounds and will display different behaviour depending upon their experiences. They may have had an erratic home life which can affect how they react to everyday life. However, they are still a vulnerable child or young person looking for a safe, caring family; they’re just as nervous meeting you, as you are meeting them.

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How will you help me become a great foster carer?

As one of our foster carers, you’ll provide the safe, caring environment that every child has a right to. We will provide you with training, counselling where required, as well as carer buddies, a social worker, and all the support you need – and anytime you have a question, we’re just a phone call away.

Want to know more?

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Inside your Fostering Guide...

  • Applying to be a foster carer
  • The different kinds of foster care
  • Support for our foster carers
  • Our training and development programmes
  • How fostering affects your finances

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