Young Person's Hub

Understanding Foster Care


You're not alone

Today, there are over 60,000 children and young people in foster care in England and Scotland. Each young person is unique and has their own story. Like all our young people, our foster families are all different - but the main thing to remember is that your foster parents are there to help you and there is always someone to turn to for advice.

What is foster care?

Foster care is providing a child or young person with a safe and secure home while they are unable to live with their birth parents. Sometimes, even though parents love their children, they may make bad decisions or not understand how to care for their children properly. This means that a judge needs to make a decision about who should care for you to make sure you are protected.

There are many different reasons why a young person cannot live at home, and social workers and foster parents will work hard to make your new home the best it can be - and, ultimately, your safety and well-being will always come first.

How long will I be in
foster care?

The length of time you will spend living with your foster parents will depend on the individual circumstances. If a child’s parents are unwell, then they will return home as soon as their parents are better. Sometimes, the situation can be more complicated and your social worker may be worried whether your parents are able to keep you safe from harm.

Sometimes it is in a child’s best interests to stay in foster care and sometimes children can return home later. Your social worker, the courts, staff at Fosterplus, and other people concerned with your care will all work together, with your family, to make sure we reach the best outcome for you

Your rights as a young person in care

The Children Act 2004 was designed with the below principles for caring for and supporting children and young people.

  • Allow young people to be healthy and have their needs met.
  • Help young people to be safe and protected from harm.
  • Help young people enjoy life, follow their interests and have positive relationships with people in their life.
  • Help young people to succeed, have support with their education and developing their skills.
  • Help make a positive contribution to young people’s lives and ensure they are listened to and feel valued.
  • Encourage economic stability for young people’s futures and prepare them for life as an adult.

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