Types of fostering

Offering different types of fostering helps us to match your specific skills and circumstances with the needs of individual children. This might include the time you have available, how well you communicate with different ages (from toddlers to teens) and whether you’d prefer to offer short-term care or make a longer-term commitment.

It’s not something you need to decide on when you enquire, but if you make an official application, we can explore these options together.

Mainstream fostering

Short-term fostering

Are you flexible enough to offer stability, love and commitment in the short-term and then say goodbye when the time comes? The job of a short-term foster carer is to prepare a child to either return home or move on to a longer-term fostering placement. Their stay with you could be anything from a few days to two years.

Long-term fostering

If a child is unable to return home they may be adopted. Where this is not in their best interest, we aim to find them a long-term fostering family, somewhere they can call home until they reach 16+. Could you offer this longer-term commitment to a young person and help them to reach their full potential?

Respite foster care

Are you looking for something more fulfilling to do during your weekends and holidays? Respite fostering is a good option for those who can’t commit to fostering full-time. It allows foster carers and families to take a break, knowing that the children are in safe hands.

Specialist fostering

We’re always on the look-out for people who have experience of caring for children or young people with additional or complex needs (such as teenage mothers with babies, children with learning or physical disabilities or young people with challenging behaviour). If you have specialist skills or you’re keen to learn them, please get in touch.

We have most need for new carers who can offer short or long-term fostercare for children aged 11+. We also need specialist carers who can look after those with more complex needs, such as children with Autism.

Private fostering

Private fostering is when a child under the age of 16 years old (18 years old if disabled) is cared for by someone who is not their parent or ‘close relative’.

Other schemes

Family Link (or Short Break care)

Family Link carers offer regular breaks to support families who have a child with a learning disability or a moderate physical disability.

For more information, visit www.n-somerset.gov.uk/familylink

Supported Lodgings

Supported Lodgings hosts rent rooms in their homes to young people aged 16-21 who’ve been in foster care or residential homes. Their role is to advise on basic life skills such as cooking and budgeting and to help them prepare for independent living.

For more information, visit www.n-somerset.gov.uk/supportedlodgings


For more information please contact us.