What is interim fostering?
Interim fostering involves caring for a baby, child or young person for a few weeks or months while difficulties at home are resolved. Interim fostering is often linked to further assessments of the baby, child or young person and other family members, together with court processes. Interim fostering would mean providing care for up to 24 months.
How interim fostering differs to other types of fostering
Interim fostering can vary from just one night to a few weeks, to several months, or as long as two years. It all depends on the individual circumstances of the child and their family. Afterwards, the child might return to their own family or go into a longer fostering placement or become adopted.
Compared to other kinds of fostering, interim foster carers often may have higher levels of contact with the children’s birth family whilst assessments are underway.
Benefits of interim fostering
Usually, a child needs interim fostering because their families are unable to look after them for a particular time. Some of the reasons why a baby, child or young person may need to go into interim foster care include:
- Their parents or guardians are unwell.
- They may be at risk from harm at home.
- Their parents are finding it difficult to cope with caring for a child at that time.
- The family is going through care proceedings – so the child goes into foster care while decisions are made about who will look after them in the future.
You’ll receive a generous fostering payment for every week a child or young person is in your care, designed to reward your professionalism and commitment.
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Other types of fostering
Long term fostering
For a child or young person this means that the care planning process has concluded that they will thrive best if they are cared for away from home on a permanent basis. This type of fostering would mean caring for a child or young person until independence.
Short break fostering
Also known as respite fostering, this is where a foster carer takes on the care and support of a child or young person so that the usual foster carer can take a well-deserved break. We offer all of our foster carers respite care every year.
Continuing Care takes children through to the age of 21, ensuring a more seamless and supported transition to adulthood. It’s available to all young people who are, or have been, in a continuing relationship with a foster carer.
In some cases, it’s often important for the child or young person to be a ‘solo’ placement - in other words, they’re the only child in the home. That means solo fostering is usually only suitable for foster carers without other children in their home.
Keeping brothers and sisters together after being placed in foster care is crucial. This type of fostering focuses on matching sibling groups with foster homes big enough for multiple foster children and foster parents who are capable of meeting their needs.
Calling for huge amounts of care, compassion and patience, this type of fostering often involves handling medications and managing complex care routines, so it’s especially demanding on your time and commitment.
Asylum seeking children
Fostering unaccompanied asylum-seeking children can be extremely rewarding experience as you provide them with a safe and secure home environment. Your role is to support them for as long as they need, helping them adapt to a new culture.
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