Types of fostering

As a foster carer, you’re likely to become accustomed with a variety of fostering placements – and you may also become specialised in certain areas. That’s why if you’re thinking of becoming a foster carer, it’s important to understand the different types of fostering you could be involved with.

What are the different types of foster care?

The different types of foster care placements can be broken up into the following list:

  • Long term fostering – also known as permanent fostering, this refers to looking after a child or young person for an extended period of time.
  • Short term fostering – also known as temporary fostering, short term fostering can be as long as a few months, but may also be as short as a few days or even hours.
  • Emergency fostering – this placement offers immediate short term care, often at short notice. This may occur if a child has been exposed to an unsafe environment, there has been a sudden illness in the family or any other unanticipated situations which occur.
  • Respite fostering – this offers other foster cares a break, or respite, from their current fostering placements.
  • Remand fostering – this offers young people who have been remanded by the courts an alternative care solution to being placed in custody.
  • Therapeutic fostering – this requires special training and education to care for children with complex needs. Here, the foster carer becomes part of a therapy team.
  • Parent and child fostering – also known as mother and baby fostering, this is when a parent and their own child come to stay in a foster carer’s home for extra support.
  • Parent and child assessment fostering – the assessment for a mother and baby fostering placement takes place over a three-month period, and assesses the parent’s ability to parent the child.

Often, one type of foster care may develop into another – for example, you may begin on an emergency fostering placement, which then turns into short term fostering if the child needs an immediate fostering placement.

It’s also important to note that even if you are specialised in a certain type of foster care, it is not guaranteed that you will always be called on for that specific type of foster care.

Want to know more about the different types of fostering? Get in touch with a member of our friendly team here at FosterCare UK.

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