What is foster care?
Foster care involves providing a safe and nurturing home for a specified and agreed amount of time for people between 0 and 18 years of age who can't live with their biological parents.
Foster care arrangements range from respite care (occasional weekend care for young people), up to long term placements, when young people become a part of your family, preferably up to when they turn 18.
There are six types of foster care:
- Respite - when carers require a break, usually for short periods (e.g. weekends). These are scheduled in advance.
- Emergency - when there are concerns for a young person's immediate safety. Provided at short notice, often after hours and on weekends.
- Short term - when the goal is on reuniting the young person with their birth or extended family. This can last up to six months.
- Long term - when the young person is not expected to return to their biological family.
- Relative/kinship care - when the young person lives with a relative or someone they already know.
- In house care (new!) - when carers provide fostering for a group of children for at least 6 months in a home provided by CASPA. Apart from a rent free house, CASPA covers all costs of utilities, costs for the children, provides a fully maintained vehicle with a fuel card and a generous tax-free carer allowance.
It is up to you how much time your family can give to fostering. You might be available for a few nights, weeks or years. Whatever type of care works for you, your help will always be valued.
Why do children need fostering?
Right now, there are more than 20,000 children in NSW who cannot live with their birth families. The reasons for that include physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse, neglect, drug or alcohol use, depression or family breakdown. All of these children have experienced the difficult loss and often painful separation from their birth family.
CASPA is looking for committed people who can offer a safe and stable home to children in need of foster care in the Northern NSW. If you have had experience with foster care, have worked with children or young people in a professional capacity, or even if you have no previous experience but feel you have the qualities needed, you could be just the person we are looking for.
You do not have to be married, have children or own the house you live. However, foster children must be provided with their own bedroom. This is an essential criteria.
Who makes good foster carers?
There’s no such thing as the ‘perfect’ carer. However, patience, energy and a sense of humour can go a long way towards helping a foster child.
It is important to be a team player, as you will need to share the care of a foster child with other people, including caseworkers, teachers, medical professionals and the birth parents.
For more information about how you can join our caring community please fill the form below so we can get in touch with you as soon as possible.
Thank you for your interest in becoming a foster carer.