Types of foster carers

There are several types of foster cares. Here is a summary of the type of fostering that you can be approved for with the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham:

  • Long term placements: providing placements for children, young people or sibling groups on a long term/permanent fostering basis, usually for the remainder of their minority
  • Mockingbird Family Modelproviding placements for children, young people or sibling groups on a long term/permanent fostering basis, with a foster carer who is part of a wider group of carers, who will support each other in a family style planned, structured format. Find out more about Mockingbird Family Model
  • Bridging placements: generally forms part of a longer-term plan for a child or young person. Foster carers work with the children or young people to prepare them for joining adoptive or long term fostering families or moving to (semi-) independent living arrangements
  • Assessment placements: usually last up to three months during which a detailed assessment is made of the needs of the child and specific support services they require
  • Short term placements: foster carers work with the child and their family for up to six weeks after which the child will return home or move on
  • Private fostering: an arrangement a parent makes for their child to live with someone who is not a close relative or guardian, for longer than 28 days. Find out more about private fostering
  • Emergency placements: unforeseen emergency placements for individual children or sibling groups, 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • Parent and child placements: placements for mothers and/or fathers and their child. Foster carers can provide guidance to parents and help them develop parenting skills
  • Solo placements: a higher level of support, supervision and care for children and young people whose needs are very specific
  • Remand foster carers: looking after young offenders on a short-term basis, sometimes just overnight. Placements can be made with very little notice, maybe on the same day. Placements may be made on a more planned basis, for example for young people leaving custody
  • Short break foster care: very short term care for disabled children in order to help support a family. This may mean looking after a child, or sibling group for anything from a couple of days, weekends, to a week or two at a time