Keep a Family Together with Parent and Child Fostering
Make a difference that lasts a lifetime by fostering a vulnerable parent and their young child.
Parent and child fostering, sometimes referred to as mother and baby placements, is a specialist type of foster care where a mother or father is placed in a foster home alongside their baby/young child.
This type of placement is becoming more common and we are urgently looking for new parent and child foster carers across all of our regions.
Why do parents and babies need support?
The parents that we help to support are usually mothers varying from their teens to their 20s. Though it can sometimes be older mothers, fathers, or both! These parents are usually extremely vulnerable and need loving guidance and support to teach them the skills they need to be a good parent.
Experiences in their early life may have been poor and often these young people have had no parental role model or experience of good parenting to draw from. They may have been in the care system themselves as children or have had negative life experiences that have affected their ability to cope with the huge responsibility of looking after a child.
Additionally, they may be facing additional challenges that make them more vulnerable such as mental health issues, poverty, drug and alcohol addiction, or relationship issues. This can lead them to be quite isolated without the support of a peer group or family members to guide them during a very difficult transitional period in their lives. The lack of a support system can cause the parent to lack confidence, feel alone and scared, and lead to low self-esteem and even depression.
Foster care is therefore in the best interests of the child and also the parent. The goal of this type of placement is to provide love and warmth to both parties.
How do the placements begin?
A court will provide direction that a family needs to be fostered so that they are given an opportunity to learn skills and demonstrate their ability to keep the child safe and care for their needs.
Placements like these give parents a second chance and are hugely important in keeping families together. Providing support to a young mother and their child allows them the opportunity to develop a bond and form a real, lasting connection that will last a lifetime. It ensures the baby is safeguarded, protected, and adequately cared for whilst teaching the mother vital life lessons, skills, and behaviours, setting them up for a brighter, happier, and more successful future.
Parent and child fostering drastically improves the chances of a family remaining together.
What is the foster parent’s role?
As a foster parent performing this role, your core responsibility is to help the parent(s) develop their skills to achieve an acceptable level of parenting to set them up for a future together. Breaking down learnt behaviours and teaching them valuable lessons, coping mechanisms, and building their confidence to raise their own child or children.
During their stay at your home, you will be guided through a support programme that is designed to help them cope with independent living. You will need to perform a dual role, caring for the parent and baby whilst also assessing the parent’s growth, ability, and progress. To do this, you will work with a highly experienced team of social workers and staff who will listen to your observations, recordings, and opinion on the parent's development.
This approach ensures the best outcomes for the parents and their children and the hope is that they can eventually move back to their home and care safely for their child.
What makes a great parent and child carer?
This is a specialist form of care that involves good listening and communication skills as well as the ability to be objective and work with social workers to assess and discuss the placement.
People suited to this role will be warm, friendly, and open with lots of patience and lots of love to give. It’s important to be empathetic and be able to understand the struggles of the family without judgement. Qualities such as honesty, organisation, creativity, and compassion will also be crucial for the role.
As the role also requires caring for a small infant, it would also be really useful if you had some experience in childcare!
Support a family in need
Interested in fostering? We’d love to hear from you. Family Fostering Partners are currently looking for new parent and child carers in all of our regions! We are an independent fostering agency with a family-focused approach. To speak to one of our friendly advisors about beginning your fostering career, give us a call on 03300 948816 or fill out our contact form below.