ways to foster

types of fostering

types of foster care

At its heart, foster care is about providing a spare room for a child who needs it. This room becomes so much more – a place of safety, a place to learn and somewhere to have fun.

There are lots of different kinds of foster care, but all of them have the same purpose. It’s about feeling at home, with a supportive family.

Fostering can be anything from an overnight stay or a short-break, to something longer-term. No two children are the same and every single one will need something different out of foster care. That’s why there is no typical foster family.

short-term foster care

A smiling adolescent boy

There isn’t a fixed timeline when it comes to short-term foster care. Essentially, it just means that the plans for a child are still being thought through. So in terms of the care you provide, it could be for an hour, a day, a month or a year!

As a short-term foster carer you work closely with us as we secure the ‘long-term’ (sometimes called permanence). This means you’re there for as long as you’re needed, offering support and love. You’re also there when it’s time for the child to move on – to their family, another foster family or adoption. You’re the bridge to this crucial next step.

Close up portrait of young girl laughing

So, a short stay doesn’t mean a small impact. These kinds of placements are often the first positive step in a longer journey – one that is different for every child in our care, and every foster carer too.

long-term foster care

A family enjoying some snacks in garden

We put a lot of thought and care into all our matches, but especially with long-term foster care. That’s because with this kind of care, it’s about providing permanence and stability. It’s crucial we find the right foster family for every single child – and they each need something unique.

Adult helping teenager with homework

That’s where you come in. As a long-term foster carer you provide a secure environment and a safe space. For a child it means a stable foster family for life.

specialist kinds of foster care

All the specialist kinds of foster care we have here in Rhondda Cynon Taf come under the headers of short-term and long-term, though some require a specific type of approval. They include:

Adult and young boy blowing dandelion together in woods

short breaks

Short breaks, or support care, offer that little break away for a child who needs it most. It isn’t defined by a particular length of time, but offers a short getaway for a night, a weekend or even just a few hours.

Our team plans short breaks in advance, making them a regular occurrence or just when the child needs it. Shorter breaks offer great new opportunities for a child to experience a different family and home, helping build new memories for them.

Short break foster carers become an extension of a family, offering a loving environment when it’s needed most.

Young girl on adults shoulders outdoors exploring

parent and child

Some parents may not be ready to face the world alone, and that’s where parent and child fostering can help.

With parent and child placements, you step in to offer valuable experience – both in terms of parenting, and life in general. You share your wisdom and offer support, so that in time these parents will be able to do the same. It’s all about building up both their confidence and their skills for the future.

A young man feeding plant

therapeutic care

We have some children in our care with more complex emotional or behavioural needs. This can mean a different kind of care is needed, and that’s where therapeutic placements come in.

There’s an extra level of support and specialist training available for therapeutic carers, to help them fulfil the individual needs of each child in their care.


Woman and young girl using computer to make video call

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