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A - Z of Resident Services:

Private Fostering

private fostering girl on a swingPrivate Fostering is when a child or young person under 16 (or 18 if disabled) goes to live for 28 days or more with someone who is not a:

  • Parent (including step parent).
  • Close relative (grandparent, aunt or uncle, brother or sister).
  • Guardian (or person with parental responsibility).

Private Fostering is different from public fostering, where a child is accommodated by the local authority, and is usually arranged by the parent and carer.

Examples of Private Fostering include:

  • A teenager living with a friend's family because of problems at home.
  • A child living with the unmarried partner of a parent, when the parent leaves the home.
  • Children from overseas who come here without a parent for a holiday exchange, educational course or to seek asylum.
  • Children with parents whose study or work involves long or unsociable hours.

If your child is going to be privately fostered or you are a private foster carer the law says that you must tell the Children's Services within your Local Authority about it six weeks beforehand, or immediately if the arrangement has already begun. It is an offence not to do so.

The law also includes any third party involved in making the arrangement, for example a language college, and any organisation, for example a school, in contact with a child or young person who is privately fostered if that organisation believes that Children's Services have not been told by the carer or parent.

 Get more information on the types of caring through email

 Get more information on the types of caring over the phone

Children's Services: 0845 607 2000

Further Information

In this section

More Information

See also in our website

External websites

  • Adoption UK
    Adoption UK is a national charity run by and for adopters, providing self-help information, advice, support and training on all aspects of adoption and adoptive parenting
  • British Association for Adoption and Fostering
    The Homepage for a British charity that supports children who are adopted or fostered
  • Children's Legal Centre
    Provide free independent legal advice to children, parents and carers
  • Family Rights Group (FRG)
    Provides advice to parents and family members whose children are involved with or require social care services
  • Department of Health
    The Homepage of an organisation that resolves issues to do with health
  • The Grandparents' Association
    Supports grandparents who are caring for their grandchildren on a full-time basis and those who have lost or are losing contact with them
  • Grandparents Plus
    Champions the role of grandparents and the wider family in children's lives, especially when they take on the caring role
  • Ofsted
    The Homepage of a charity who want to safeguard all children
  • Family Lives
    The Homepage of a website that helps parents deal with family lives
  • Somebody Else's Child
    The Homepage full of information on privately fostering children
  • The Fostering Network
    The Homepage of the UK's leading charity for foster care
  • Voice
    Advocacy organisation for children living away from home or in need
  • Young Minds
    An organisation that works to improve the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people and empowering their parents and carers

We are not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more

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This page was last reviewed 29 November 2013 at 15:01.
The page is next due for review 28 May 2015.