Family Fostering will look to provide foster placements for looked after children and young people who have suffered childhood trauma and are unable to live with their birth families. Placements will usually be within the Kent and South East London region in order for children and foster families to most easily access the support services we provide.
Our vision is to strive for longevity in placements, recognising this stability is fundamental to effectively supporting children and young people. Therefore, our focus will be on securing long term placements wherever children are unable to return to their birth families. However, we recognise the significant difference foster carers can make to children and young people even during brief placements. Often emergency and short term placements can progress to long term and even permanency. In all cases we will demonstrate commitment to working in partnership with all agencies involved with the children and young people to ensure care planning is rigorous and each child and young person is fully supported, however brief the duration of their placement is.
Family Fostering will accept the following placement types subject to stringent matching against foster placement vacancies:
• Short term
• Long term
• Shared care
• Solo placements
• Sibling group placements
• Children/young people with disabilities
Factors to consider in the matching process will include: preferred geographical location, appropriate skills, experience, and training to meet a looked after child’s needs including education, health, contact, diversity & equality. This is recorded on our matching form. Within each child and young person’s placements, Family Fostering will also provide the following subjects to individual contracts with Local Authorities:
• Supervision of contact;
• Escort and transport for professional appointments;
• Psychological and therapeutic services;
Family Fostering will ensure that potential placements will be thoroughly assessed for their suitability using a stringent matching process which ensures children and young people are matched with a foster family capable of meeting their assessed needs. Through this we will strive to ensure foster placements are given the greatest chance of long term success. This will be further built upon by each foster carer's Supervising Social Worker liaising closely with the child and young person’s Local Authority Social Worker and the Placements Officer. This is to ensure a tailored support package is in place as soon as is practicable following confirmation of the placement.
Family Fostering will ensure that all their foster carers will:
Receive specialist training to develop their therapeutic insight into caring for children and young people who have experienced childhood trauma.
Receive training and support in order to achieve the Training Support and Development Standards.
Be allocated an experienced and qualified Supervising Social Worker.
Be enrolled with Fostering Network (the UK's leading charity for everyone with a personal or professional involvement in fostering. Fostering Network provide up to date guidance, up-to-date information as well as legal advice.)
Have access to a qualified social worker for advice, guidance and support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Be provided with local support groups, workshops and activity days.
Have access to respite both planned and compassionate.
Be provided with a comprehensive set of policies and procedures and time spent guiding them on the importance of their use.
Receive a fostering allowance when a child or young person is placed in their care. This allowance includes all reasonable disbursement in respect of their responsibilities to provide for the needs of foster child or young person and meet their obligations as an approved foster carer.
Receive support and supervision visits from their Supervising Social Worker at least once a month (more when needed) as well as weekly telephone support calls. A minimum of two unannounced visits each year will also be made by the Supervising Social Worker.