Short term fostering
This is most people's idea of fostering. Once you become an approved foster carer, children will come to stay with you for a few days, several weeks or several months until they can return home or move on to adoption or permanent fostering.
Long term fostering
Long term or permanent fostering involves caring for a child until they become an adult and can live independently. This difference between adoption and permanent fostering is to do with the legal status of the child. Parents retain parental responsibility for fostered children, they don't if the child is adopted.
Short term breaks
The 'Short Term Breaks' scheme allows young people with disabilities to have regular short breaks with foster carers. Young people receiving a service can have a wide range of needs. Foster carers provide essential support to both the child and their family.
Specialist fostering placements are needed to care for children and young people with complex needs who would otherwise be placed in residential care. Children who will benefit from these placements may have experienced significant trauma and need experienced, resilient foster carers who can show patience and empathy to help them return home to family or to settle into a fostering household. People who have experience of working in professions such as police force, youth injustice, probation service, ambulance or fire service, social care, education, etc may be suited to specialist fostering. A bespoke package of support, training and appropriate fees and allowances are provided for this role.