Flexible foster care Home Types of fostering Flexible foster care We experience demand for foster carers at different times of the year and need more foster carers to be available for children and young people when they need it. School holidays see an increase in the number of children needing foster care due to requests for respite and increased pressure on families. We also support boarding school pupils who may just need somewhere to call home once a month or outside of term time. More often, we need foster carers who can look after a child in an emergency or for short term respite. This may be on a same day basis or planned in advance. We know that teaching, school and academic staff have the key skills we need to support children and young people, but may not have time available during school terms to commit to fostering. Therefore, we’re now offering flexible fostering, meaning you would only be asked to care for a child during periods when you have the time and availability to foster, such as during school holidays. It may also be that you have commitments in your personal life that mean you have a weekend every month free to care for children who need short term respite. What will I need to do? When caring for a child on a flexible fostering basis, you will need to: Show you have the commitment and ability to accept a child or young person. Support children and young people to transition between carers. Encourage and support them to access education, training and extra-curricular opportunities. Offer a safe and caring environment for a child or young person. Recognise that behaviour is a form of communication and adapt the way you parent accordingly. Encourage and support children to maintain relationships with their family and support networks. Communicate your availability and commit to a child when they are in your care. What will I receive? As a foster carer, you will receive: Excellent training and an opportunity to undertake a QCF Diploma for the Children’s Workforce after a qualifying period. Above national average financial allowances. Opportunities to progress to receive up to £236.60 on top of the child’s weekly allowances. Support from a committed Fostering Social Worker and other social care professionals who will be there to help and offer advice. Opportunities for peer support and networking. Support from our in-house psychologist. Access to 24-hour support via the foster care support line and emergency duty team.