short term fostering

Short term fostering

Short term fostering provides children with a safe, loving home for a number of nights, days, months, or even several years.

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What is short term foster care?

Short term fostering provides children in care with a safe and loving home when they’re no longer able to stay at home; this could be for a number of days, weeks, months, or even a few years.

They're crucial for children and young people whose parents or caregivers are unable to care for them, or for those who may be going through care proceedings where their longer-term care plan is being finalised.

Short term fostering placements are never initially planned to be permanent; wherever possible, foster carers will support the child to return home to their birth family. However, if this isn’t possible, foster parents will support them on their adoption journey or to successfully transition to a long term foster family, who will care for them until they reach 18. For older young people, foster parents will support them up until adulthood, providing them with key life skills and help them transition into independent living.

It’s not uncommon for a child to initially live with a foster family on a short-term arrangement and then remain with them on a long-term arrangement once the child’s care plan has been finalised. In fact, wherever possible, we strive for this as it brings a greater level of stability to a child in care and avoids unnecessary disruption.

Just starting to think about fostering?

Our Introduction to Fostering guide is the perfect place to start. Download it today and discover the world of fostering.


What’s the difference between short & long-term fostering?

Short-term fostering can last a few nights, several months or a couple of years. The placements are never designed to be permanent, and the foster family will support the child until they are ready to return to their birth family or move to a long-term foster family. Long-term fostering supports a child over the course of several years or until they reach 18 years old.

What are the benefits of short-term fostering?

Providing short-term foster care is very rewarding as you’re able to help a child during an unsettling and confusing time in their life. They may be in care because of family illness, abuse or neglect, they’re waiting to be adopted or their future guardianship is still being decided. A child needs stability in these moments, and you can make a real difference in a short space of time.

How long is a short-term foster placement?

Short-term fostering provides a child with temporary care for a few nights, several months or even a couple of years while arrangements are being made for their future. The majority of young people that come to us do so initially on a short-term basis.

short term fostering pay

Short term fostering pay

When you join ISP, you’ll receive a weekly fostering allowance when a young person is placed with you – from £524 - £664 per week - depending on your experience and area. This fee comprises two elements; a child allowance to cover all costs concerning the child in your care and a foster parent fee to reward you for undertaking the fostering task.

You’ll also receive a holiday and summer activity allowance to encourage enriching life experiences for young people in foster care.

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who can foster

Who can become a foster parent?

We’re looking for individuals from all walks of life to join our fostering family. The initial requirements to foster are:

  • You're over 21 years old
  • You have a spare bedroom
  • You have a legal right to work in the UK
  • You have the time, energy and passion to transform a child’s life

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become carer

How to become a foster parent

The first step is to fill out our online form and we’ll be in touch to talk to you about the role, answer any questions and take a few details from you to check you meet the initial criteria to foster.

We’ll then arrange to visit you at home, so you can learn more about the work we do and give us the opportunity to get to know you better. You’ll then need to complete an application form and, if accepted, you’ll start your full fostering assessment.

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Speak to our team today

Whether you're looking for more information or you're ready to apply, we're here to help you on your journey.

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