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Long Term Fostering

Long term foster care, or long term fostering, is a care plan in the UK where a child is placed with a registered long term foster parent for an extended period of time, usually for several years or until adulthood. 

  • It is beneficial to the child as it provides them with stability, a sense of belonging and the chance to settle down and grow with their long term foster parent or parents.
  • Although it may seem similar, it is important to remember that long term foster care in the UK is different to adoption.


Family Fostering Partners know that all children and young people deserve a stable, loving and nurturing home. That’s where long term fostering comes in; long term fostering provides a permanent foster home for vulnerable children and young people, within the UK.  

In cases where a child may not be able to live with their parents and adoption is not be viable, long term fostering is the answer. This type of placement is provided by an approved long term foster parent or parents. Long term fostering means that a child or young person can remain under the care of a committed long term foster parent, often for several years or until they reach adulthood. This provides them with a stable place to grow and develop. It helps them to feel a sense of consistency and gain a sense of belonging within a family. Being settled in one place also allows that child to make friends, develop a sense of community and form positive relationships. 

The permanent one-to-one support that a long term foster parent can provide to a child is much more beneficial in comparison to being moved around and gives them a chance to truly thrive. 

What is the difference between long term fostering and adoption in the UK?  

Although long term foster care can seem very similar to adoption, it is important to remember that within the UK, there are distinct differences. 

  • A child under your care on a long term fostering arrangement will still remain the legal responsibility of the local authority. Whereas when a child is adopted, legal responsibilities are transferred to the adoptive parents.
  • When you foster a child in the UK, you receive an allowance for their care. When you adopt a child, you are legally that child’s adoptive parents and will not receive payments for their care.
  • Be it on a short term or long term fostering basis, contact is usually maintained with the birth family, if feasible. When adopting, there tends to be less or no contact involved with birth parents.

Could you be a long term foster parent? 

 Providing a young person with a permanent home is a big decision, but the rewards are huge, and we will be there to help you every step of the way. You will also have access to Foster Talk throughout your long term fostering journey. 

Family Fostering Partners provide ongoing training and support for long term foster parents to ensure that the long term foster care placements that we support in the UK are successful and happy for everyone! 


Benefits of long term foster care in the UK 

Family Fostering Partners ensure that all carers are well-matched with foster children. When matching you with a child, your Supervising Social Worker will take into account your skills, preference and personality. Click here to learn more about the assessment process. 

We endeavour to ensure all long term foster care placements are a good match and that carers are happy. This means many of our placements are successful and our long term foster parent and carers report a whole host of amazing benefits to offering long term foster care, including: 

  • The ability to develop a strong relationship with their foster child throughout their long term fostering journey.
  • A happy and safe home for everyone.
  • More authority to make day-to-day decisions as they are the child’s primary carer.
  • The chance to make significant progress with a child’s behaviour and education.

 If you think that long term fostering could be for you, please get in touch with us to find out more by filling out the contact form below or giving us a call on 03300 948816. 


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