At Parent and Child Fostering Service, we provide foster placements for children, young people and both parents and their babies.
In a parent and child placement, the aim is to enable parents who struggle with parenting skills to gain the knowledge and parenting capacity to safely and responsibly care for their babies/toddlers.
This placement type also generates evidence based information on the parent's parenting abilities.
The foster carer gathers information and records through observations and important activities in the placement, for example the quality of the parent and child attachment and bonding process. The foster carer's daily log of events in the placement is vitally important for informing the local authority's decisions towards ensuring a positive outcome of the placement . The carer's input also helps the family social worker form an informed view on the parent's parenting abilities to be able to devise an effective care plan.
The carer's remuneration in this area of provision is higher than other foster placement type because of the level of responsibility and expectations.
It is important to note that the foster carer does not necessarily take over child care responsibilities from the parent placed except when the parent is out of the placement as agreed in the care plan or is engaged in other activities connected with the care of her baby. The foster carer's remit in this area of fostering is to enable, support and encourage the parent to develop important parenting skills and abilities which the parent can then replicate upon leaving the placement.
This type of foster placement is often an alternative to a mother and baby residential unit resulting from a court direction.
The local authority may also make the decision for a parent and child foster placement if the parent is not coping well or
needs extra support but does not have an extended family or support network to assist them.
Fostering can offer the necessary stability and support, for young expectant women who are either already in care or are unable to continue living at home and enter care with pregnancy as a factor. There is of huge benefit to both the parent and their baby because parental of the social learning which is carried out in a family environment. The young parent gains from the support and advice offered by the foster parent. This setting also enables some teenage parents to complete their schooling or develop the skills of parenting alongside employment.
Parent and child fostering can be very rewarding although can at times be complex and challenging. The foster carer therefore requires skills and qualities such as:
There is a growing need for more foster carers who are interested in looking after young, most often teenage parents and their babies/toddlers.
If you are interested in becoming a foster carer with us, we invite your expression of interest and look to welcome you on board.