Guide to fostering young children


A study into the ages of children in foster care showed that 36% of children in care are under the age of 10 and 13% of these are between the ages of 1 and 4. In this guide, we’ll shine a light on fostering young children and explain some of the main topics to be aware of.

The differences between fostering young children and older children or teenagers

Fostering children or young people can be a very rewarding experience. Young children tend to be very responsive to positive experiences but can require lots of attention, care and support. Some of the main differences between fostering young children and older children or teenagers include.

  • Hands-on care: Generally, younger children need more hands-on care in comparison to teenagers or older children. You may need to help younger children with feeding themselves, using the toilet or dressing themselves. You’ll also need to implement a bedtime routine, perhaps introducing story time to their bedtime routine.
  • Reaching developmental milestones: Young children may require specialist support to help them to meet their developmental milestones, especially if they have experienced neglect in the past.
  • Regulating and communicating their feelings: Very young children may not be able to communicate in a way their foster parents can understand, which can make it difficult to understand their needs fully.

Younger children are in a state of rapid development and growth and it can be incredibly rewarding to help them grow, explore the world around them and learn new skills.

Fostering young children with Foster Care UK

At an independent fostering agency, you’re more likely to foster older children than a young child or baby. This is because young children are more likely to be placed with family members or relatives before turning to foster care, whilst the number of older children and teenagers in need of foster care is much higher.

One of our most frequently asked questions is “Can you choose the age of the child you want to foster?”. And, while you can’t pick the exact age of a child you want to foster, you can register a preference. It’s important to remember that it might take longer for you to be matched with a foster child if you decide to choose a specific age that you’d like to foster.

Here at Foster Care UK we provide a range of training and support so that you can help to provide the best possible care for your foster child. For more information including what happens when a child is taken into care or if you’re ready to discuss the fostering process further contact our friendly and helpful team today.

Thinking of fostering?

If you’ve got any questions or would like to find out more about fostering with Capstone, fill out the form below.
An experienced fostering advisor from your local area will then be in touch.

The information you provide will be used to respond to the enquiry you have submitted, for further information please refer to our privacy policy.

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Find out more about fostering with FosterCare UK.

Download our helpful guide to becoming a foster carer

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Ways to

Start the conversation today. Our team of friendly advisors are on hand to answer any foster care questions you may have. We can offer you honest and practical advice that can help you decide if becoming a foster carer is the right path for you.

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call back

Contact us by completing our online form and one of our fostering advisors will respond to your enquiry within 24 hours.

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Contact us by phone and one of our friendly fostering experts will be on hand for any foster care advice and support you require.

Download a Brochure

Download our helpful guide to becoming a foster carer with Fostercare UK.