Support to your own Children

Standards and Regulations

Fostering Services National Minimum Standards (England) 2011:

Training, Support and Development Standards for Foster Care:

Foster carers'own children play an important part in the success of fostering, often being the ones who welcome a new foster child into the home and help them to settle in.

But sharing their home and parents with another child/young person can be hard and foster carers' own children need support to deal with the daily challenges of growing up in a fostering family. Discussions will need to take place about behaviour for everyone, what is acceptable and what is not.

Your children, depending on their age, should be part of developing the Safer Caring Plan so that everyone is clear on the boundaries of everyday life to make sure everybody feels safe. See: Developing a Safer Caring Plan.

When children don't get the support they need, a placement is more likely to break down, which leads to more instability for fostered children. See: My Placement may be Breaking Down.

You may get disagreements between your own children and fostered children but also fun friendships and memory making for the whole family.

When you consider taking a child, always think about how this child will fit with your family, you can discuss any questions you may have with your Supervising Social Worker who will want to get to know your children so they feel that they can have their say with the fostering service and that they have somewhere else to turn to if needed.

Remember it is important for you to spend time with your own children, think about a family planner where you agree times, dates and activities you will do with your own children and your fostered child. These can be separately and at times together.

Look out for early signs of problems arising and talk to your child and your fostered child, speak to your Supervising Social Worker during your supervision meetings or before that if it won't wait. You may also look for general advice from other foster carers.

If you feel an issue is getting worse and you need some support, don't leave it and always record any relevant information.