The type of fostering that's right for you will depend on your experience and personal circumstances. There are several different kinds of foster care:
- Short break
- Fostering teenage children
- Supported Lodgings
- Black and minority ethnic fostering
- Family and friends carers
Long-term foster carers look after a child or young person who isn't able to go back to their birth family and isn't going to be adopted. They will usually have some contact with birth relatives.
With fostering on a long-term basis, there's sometimes the need to foster a group of brothers and sisters, helping to keep the family unit together.
A child could be as young as seven when they move into a long-term placement and it will usually last until they are 16-18 years old.
Short-term foster carers can look after a baby, a child or a group of brothers and sisters while plans are made for their long-term future. They could go back to their families, be adopted or move into long-term foster care. They'll usually still have contact with their birth families.
A short-term placement could last from a few days to over a year, and we may not know at the beginning of the placement exactly when the child will move on.
Short break fostering
A little time can make a big difference. There are lots of reasons why some children and young people need foster care. The one thing they have in common is that they need care and support.
Disabled children and their families need this help and support too, through 'short break care'.
Short break care gives disabled children the chance to have a great time outside their family. It also helps them to become more independent and form friendships. At the same time, their families get a regular break from the demands of caring for a disabled child.
Short-break foster care can be for a few hours, a day, a week or even just overnight. Allowances for short-break carers depend on the needs of the child.
We need short break foster carers who are able to provide:
- flexible support ranging from day care to overnight stays
- care for a child with challenging behavioural needs
- care for a child with nursing needs
- a home that could be made accessible for children with mobility difficulties
- care for children with sensory problems
- care in a child's own home
- care as part of a team around the child
Fostering teenage children
Foster carers provide a secure and loving home for teenage children who cannot live with their birth families.
Sometimes the child may have a disability or complex needs that their family can't cope with. There are many teenage children who need foster care.
Being a young person is an exciting part of life that can come with challenges, so foster carers need to have the patience and time to be able to talk to a young person.
Fostering children and young people from your community
We need foster carers for children and teenagers of all backgrounds. It's very important for them to have foster carers who understand their culture and traditions. That's why we need foster carers from all of Newcastle's communities.
The Supported Lodgings Scheme aims to give young people, aged between 16 and 21, good quality accommodation together with the security and support that living with a responsible adult can offer.
There are lots of reasons why young people need supported lodgings. It could be that they've experienced a family breakdown or have recently left full-time care and are not ready to live on their own.
The scheme provides a stepping-stone for young people to help them learn the skills to live independently.
Can I provide supported lodgings?
- We're looking for people who:
- Have a spare room
- Can provide two meals a day, typically breakfast and evening meal
- Are caring and understanding
- Will offer a young person some support
Whatever your age, ethnicity or personal circumstances, providing supported lodgings could be for you.
You don't have to own your home or be employed. You can work full-time and still provide supported lodgings.
Is providing supported lodgings for me?
You need to be willing to spend some time with a young person and provide emotional support when needed. The young person could be staying with you from two weeks to up to two years.
Most of all, you need to have commitment, patience and the ability to share your home with a young person who needs your support. Providing supported lodgings is different from other types of care because you'll not be legally responsible for the young person.
What support will I receive?
We provide all of our supported lodgings workers with a full package of financial and professional support.
We pay an allowance of £134 per week to cover the expenses of caring for a young person and the time you spend looking after them.
The Supported Lodgings scheme workers will:
- Arrange training for all members of your household
- Match a young person to your household and arrange the moving in process
- Monitor the placement and make sure that you and the young person get constant support
- Arrange for the young person to move on to more independent living when the placement ends
Our new Build a Future service has been created to support children and young people on the edge of care, away form the communities and people who mean the most to them.
These young people can often display extremely challenging behaviours and the service has created a theraputic approach to supporting both the young people and carers.
Black and minority ethnic fostering
We need foster carers from all of Newcastle's communities.
Our foster carers provide secure and loving homes for children and teenagers who can't live with their birth families. There are lots of reasons why children can't live with their families but the one thing these children and young people have in common is that they need care and support. Some of the children or young people who need foster care are from black and minority ethnic (BME) backgrounds. To help them to go on to have a happy and fulfilling future, it's very important for them to have a foster carer that understands their culture and traditions. BME foster carers can offer a wealth of support to children who may have been separated from, or have little contact with their own community.
Services and support for family friends and carers
If you live in the North East of England within 50 miles of Newcastle and you'd like to become a foster carer, please complete our fostering application form or call 0191 277 2430.
Phone: 0191 277 2430