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A Closer Look At Emergency Foster Care

Without emergency foster care being available to the children and young people within our society, it is highly likely that some young people may continue to become subject situations that are often unfamiliar, unpredictable and even dangerous.

Clearly, no child deserves to be in a position like this, so that’s why emergency foster care is designed to remove children and young people from such stressful situations, by placing them in the arms of comforting and stable emergency foster families.

What is emergency foster care?

In an ideal world, each and every foster placement would be pre-planned well in advance, and although our specialised matching process is designed to find the perfect fit even in extreme circumstances, we know that emergency foster care is a critical part of the wider fostering landscape.

Fostering is without time constraints and emergency foster care could be required at any time of day or night, as well as other unexpected times. There’s certainly no denying the importance of it either, but in its immediate form it is designed to meet the urgent needs of a child or young person.

By providing a spare bedroom, appropriate clothing and food, it is believed that these needs can be met. Whilst it is important to consider whether this environment is safe and stable enough to promote further development, it is often not the sole purpose of an emergency foster care placement.

Preparing for an emergency foster placement

As an experienced independent foster care agency, we often discover that children in emergency foster care may become easily confused, frightened and unfamiliar because of this somewhat quick change of environments. So, it’s essential that we provide levels of training and safeguarding to ensure our community of dedicated foster carers are comfortable in welcoming emergency foster placements, flexible in addressing a child’s needs, as well as sensitive enough to understand any apparent behaviours.

From having a gender-neutral spare bedroom, age appropriate clothing to sufficient amounts of food available, we’ll also ensure that our foster carers are prepared practically for the arrival of an emergency foster care placement.

Even in the most extreme or distressing circumstances, we’ll do our upmost to provide our potential foster carers with best level of information and advice about a particular child or young person, prior to their acceptance of the placement. Not only does it help ensure that the fostering relationship can get off to the best possible start, but it also ensures the transition is as smooth and as painless as possible. Ultimately, you as the foster carer has the final say on whether to accept a placement or not.

How long do emergency foster placements usually last?

Emergency foster care placements are usually short-term placements that are designed to provide children and young people with temporary care. Ranging from a couple of days to several weeks, it all depends upon the reasoning why a child was first placed in emergency foster care as to when they can return to their family. This is usually determined by the Local Authority, although some emergency foster placements are known to have extended into more permanent placements from time to time.

Interested in being an emergency foster carer?

There’s no doubt that emergency foster carers are the lifeblood of the fostering world and without them some children may not have opportunity to lead a bright and successful life. Being able to provide a child or young person with a lifeline at the drop of a hat is probably one of the most rewarding and unselfish acts that anyone could do.

We’re still on the lookout for more likeminded people, so if you’re interested get in touch with our friendly and knowledgeable team today.

Article Information

Posted on 27 December 2015

Posted in Fostering children

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