What are the different

Types of Foster Care?

Foster carers look after vulnerable children and young people who, for a variety of reasons, are unable to live with their own birth families. Some children may also have physical or learning disabilities (or both) and need specialist care, others may have suffered abuse or have been temporarily removed from a family in crisis.

If you are considering becoming a foster carer you will need to think about what age groups and types of children (for example children with disabilities or teenagers). You don’t have to be approved for one specific type of caring role as you may have the skills and experience to offer different types of care.



Emergency foster carers take children or young people at short notice, at any time of the day or night. Children usually only stay for a few days while longer term plans are being considered.

Short Term

This is usually taken to mean that it is planned for the child to remain in the placement for only a specified period. The child may have been placed in an emergency to begin with. This type of care can be anything from a few days to a few months.

Long Term

When a child or young person, for whatever reason, cannot return home and adoption is not an option, they will live their foster family permanently in long-term foster care until they’re adults.

Short Break Care

When children who are disabled, have special needs or have behavioural difficulties regularly stay for a while with a family. This means their parents or usual foster carers can have a break. Short Break care can be offered at the weekend or during the week and can be overnight or daytime support.

Support Care

This is to help prevent children and young people coming into care on a permanent basis, support care is offered to the family. As a foster carer you will work with the birth families in order to support them. It allows time out for both children and parents.


From time to time, foster carers may need respite for the child they are currently caring for. As a foster carer you will look after their foster child. This can range from a day to a week.

Support Care

To help prevent children and young people coming into care on a permanent basis, support care is offered to the family. As a foster carer you will work with the birth families in order to support them. It allows time out for both children and parents.

Parent and Child

Parent and child placements give parents the opportunity to develop their parenting skills, by living with a foster carer. As a foster carer you would be able to offer guidance and assistance to the parent in managing the care tasks for the baby. This may include direct instruction, responding to questions and practical support such as accompanying the parent to health appointments, parent and baby groups or shopping.

Family and friends

A child being cared for by the local council goes to live with someone they already know, usually a family member.

Extra Information

Foster carers come from all walks of life, just like the children who need foster care. We welcome applications from all sections of the community.

We ask that you disclose any criminal convictions although they may not necessarily exclude you from being a foster carer unless you have committed offences against children.

As part of the process you will be subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Check and this will also include members of your household aged 18

In addition we will check out your details with other agencies such as Education, your employer and NSPCC.

Smoking Policy

Please note it is Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council’s policy not to recruit and approve people who smoke for children up to the age of 5 years. Therefore anyone wants to be considered for training and approval as foster carers for children under 5 must make a commitment to cease smoking.

“Giving a child the best possible start in life is so rewarding and for people thinking about fostering my advice would be: to give a lot of patience and love, and don’t just say it prove it.”

I’m interested

Could I Foster?

We welcome applications from anyone interested in fostering regardless of your sexuality or gender, whether you’re single, married or living with a partner.

Male or Female

You can be Male or Female to foster.


Age Range

There is no upper age limit to foster but you must be over 21.

Relationship Status

You can be married, living together or single. You would need to of lived together or been in your relationship for 2 years before you can apply to be foster carers.

Sexual Orientation

You can be in a heterosexual or a same sex relationship to foster.


You can be employed, unemployed or retired.

Living Arrangments

You need to be a home owner or tenant (with a spare bedroom).

Religion & Ethnicity

You can be religious or non-religious and be from any ethnic background.


You can be living with a disability and foster.


People with children or no children, or grown up children who have left home.

Start typing and press Enter to search