Fostering | LocalGov

Councils team up for new fostering initiative


Eleven local authorities in the East of England have teamed up as part of a new initiative aimed at recruiting more people to become foster carers.

Eight councils launch fostering hub


A fostering hub has been created by eight councils in Cheshire and Merseyside with the aim of ‘urgently’ recruiting carers.

Social work development programme 'pulled' by Department for Education


A Government decision to end a training and development programme for social work managers has been branded a ‘kick in the teeth’ for the sector.

Negative fostering experiences undermining recruitment


Poor communication, delays or insufficient information from fostering services are putting people off being foster parents, new research reveals.

How councils can improve services for care leavers


Ian Stewart-Watson, programme manager of New Belongings at Coram, looks at how councils can work with their young people to improve services for care leavers.

DfE supports proposals to help vulnerable children


Local authorities might soon be able to draw on the support of regional bodies to help them find suitable placements for children, the DfE says.

Councils urged to check information sharing agreements


Councils are being urged to check they have adequate information sharing agreements with their providers, after one council struggled to access essential data.

Schools should be better utilised for local safeguarding, report says


Schools and primary care networks should be better utilised in supporting Local Safeguarding Partnerships, a new report into foster care has concluded.

Social care failing LGBTQ+ young people, study reveals


The social care system needs to improve how it cares for LGBTQ+ young people in residential and foster homes, University of Birmingham researchers say.

Number of fostering homes down by a quarter


The number of available homes for foster children in England has fallen by almost a quarter in four years, according to the latest Ofsted figures.

Foster parent shortage ‘financially ruinous’ for councils


Foster carers have called for more support to help with the cost-of-living crisis and warned a shortage of carers is likely to be ‘ruinous’ for councils.

The state is failing foster children, charity says


The needs of many children in foster care are not being properly looked after, a leading fostering charity has warned.

Tens of thousands fewer children could avoid going into council care


Tens of thousands of young people could avoid going into council care if services are reshaped under a new ‘optimised delivery model’ based on a family-focused way of delivering support, says a report.

'Crumbling' fostering system failing vulnerable children


Urgent action is needed to fix the 'crumbling and failing' fostering system, a charity has warned.

Figures paint 'bleak picture' of foster care


A lack of foster carers means vulnerable children are not getting the support they need, Ofsted has warned.

A third of kinship carers warn children are missing support


Thousands of vulnerable children being looked after by kinship carers are not getting the support they need, a new survey has revealed.

Why a new law discriminates against over-16s in care


Malcolm Johnson warns that a new law governing decisions about children in care in England could put vulnerable 16 and 17 year-olds at risk.

Union calls for 'new deal' for Shared Lives foster carers


Councils have been urged to provide a 'pay rise' and respite care for Shared Lives foster carers who look after vulnerable adults in their homes.

Charity warns children needing care rises by a third


The number of children being referred to its fostering service has risen by a third in the past year, a charity has warned.

Councils failing to plan for fostering provision, think tank warns


Three quarters of local authorities are failing to meet their legal duty to plan for future demand in foster care, a report has warned today.

BCP Council agrees to check past payments to foster carers


BCP Council has agreed to check whether it has paid friends and family foster carers properly over the past five years following an investigation.

Charity calls for ‘fair’ financial support for kinship carers


A charity has called on the Government to ensure that kinship carers receive the same amount of financial support as foster carers.

The biggest providers of children's care placements report £216m profits


The six biggest independent providers of children’s residential and fostering placements made £219m in profit last year, a new report has found.

Capacity in foster care is stalling, data reveals


The number of applications to become a foster carer has fallen by 10% since March last year, new data has revealed.

Tribunal rules foster care workers entitled to employee rights


A UK tribunal has ruled that foster care workers are council employees and therefore entitled to employment rights.

Charity declares ‘state of emergency’ in foster care


A children’s charity has warned that the number of children needing foster care has increased by 44% during the pandemic.

Councils warned to cover foster carers’ school transport costs


Councils have been reminded by the local government ombudsman that they should be providing financial support to foster parents to pay for school transport.

Foster carers experience high-levels of ‘burnout’, study reveals


Psychologists have called for more support to be provided to foster carers after a new study reveals the extent of ‘burnout’ in the sector.

Foster parents at risk of burnout and stress, study warns


Foster carers are more likely to suffer from secondary traumatic stress due to their exposure to the trauma stories of their foster children, a study has revealed.

Kinship carers ‘lack support’ in times of crisis, charity warns


Family members who take on the responsibility of caring for children who are not their own risk being penalised due to a lack of support and independent advice, a charity has warned.

Whitehall launches 10 new foster projects


The Government has today launched fostering projects in 10 new locations in a bid to provide foster families with practical and emotional support and advice.

Kinship carers blast lack of support from children's services


Local authorities should have a legal responsibility to support people looking after the children of family and friends, campaigners have argued.

Nottinghamshire councils apologise for ‘decades’ of child abuse


Nottinghamshire councils have apologised for letting survivors ‘down in worst possible way’ after an inquiry found hundreds of children were abused in care.

Foster carers need ‘more support’ to look after LGBTQ young people


More support is needed for foster carers looking after LGBTQ young people, new study says.

Ambitious for adoption


Dr Carol Homden argues the closure of the Adoption Register for England means all parts of the system must work together to ensure the best possible service to children.

Council accused of ‘negligence’ over Parsons Green bomber


Surrey has been accused of ‘negligence’ by the foster parents of the Parsons Green bomber who claim the authority failed to warn them he had been radicalised.

Foster carers feel ‘undervalued’, report reveals


Foster carers do not feel treated as an ‘equal and valued’ member of the social care team looking after fostered children, a new report has revealed.

Number of looked after children rises to over 75,000


The number of children looked after by local authorities has increased since last year, prompting council chiefs to warn of the ‘huge demand’ this is placing on children’s services.

Home Office announces £13m fund to support vulnerable children


Councils have welcomed £13m of funding to help vulnerable children but warned cuts to children’s services are making it ‘difficult’ to help families.

Foster parents to receive free childcare


Foster parents will have access to the government’s 30 hours free childcare offer for the first time from September.

Children's services blow for new chiefs


Surrey CC’s children’s services are still inadequate, according to Ofsted – three years after they received the same grade.

Urgent need for another 8,000 foster families says charity


The UK needs another 8,000 new foster families to ensure all fostered children can find the right home, a charity has warned today.

The scrutiny of foster care costs


Ray Hart questions why foster care costs aren’t subject to the same level of scrutiny as other social care costs.

Government fostering report calls for councils to work with agencies


Collaboration between local authorities and the private sector would improve foster care for children, a new Government report has suggested.

Committee calls for ‘fundamental review’ of foster system


MPs have called on the Government to carry out a ‘fundamental review’ of the whole foster care system to ensure children and foster parents are supported.

Counting the cost of foster care abuse


Ceri Sian Williams warns local authorities could face a significant increase in foster care abuse claims following a recent court ruling.

Investigation concludes ‘Christian’ child happy with Muslim foster parents


Inquiry by Tower Hamlets into allegations a Muslim couple fostering a ‘Christian’ child coerced her into following their faith concluded claims were baseless.

Council liable for foster care abuse, judge rules


Local authorities could face a big increase in claims by foster children over historic or recent child abuse after a landmark ruling by the Supreme Court.

Safeguarding foster children from radicalisation


William Eichler finds out how the fostering sector can protect children from radical ideologies.

Record number of children in care system


Council leaders have warned a record number of children are now in the care system, with 90 youngsters a day entering care last year.

Council charges foster family for free school transport


Councils are putting foster children at a disadvantage compared to their peers when it comes to school transport, ombudsman says.

Shocking survey reveals 'true scale' of foster care crisis


A new poll by a children’s charity has revealed over 85% of UK adults surveyed show little or no interest in fostering, raising concerns over the future of foster care in the UK.

London boroughs awarded £1m for innovative fostering scheme


Six London boroughs have been awarded £1m for a scheme improving access to high-quality residential care and fostering placements for looked after children.

Watch - Foster with Nottingham City Council


Hear from the council's foster carers about the importance of fostering with Nottingham City Council.

Cracks within fostering system 'likely to get bigger' warns charity


The fostering system in the UK is under ‘unsustainable strain’, with ‘hard-won improvements’ at risk of being eroded, a report has warned today.

Foster care system in need of ‘urgent attention’, MPs say


MPs have launched an inquiry into fostering in England today at a time when the number of looked-after children is at its highest point since 1985.

Charity to take over Peterborough’s fostering and adoption services


Peterborough Council has agreed to transfer all its fostering and adoption services to a charitable organisation.

Councils call for ‘golden hellos’ in fostering to be banned


Town hall leads have called for a ban on independent agencies offering foster carers cash to switch from working for local authorities.

Councils hit out at 'golden hellos' in fostering


Children’s services directors have called for private agencies to be banned from offering golden hellos of up to £3,000 to poach foster carers from councils.

Foster care children do better at school, report finds


Town hall bosses have highlighted research that shows children in foster care do better at school to help promote Foster Care Fortnight.

Queen's Speech 2016: Councils face fresh demands under ‘care covenant’


Proposals to speed up child adoption and raise council support for young people were outlined in the Queen’s Speech today.

Cameron outlines reforms for social workers


David Cameron has pledged to change the way local authorities help children in care with a new regulator and further reforms.

Foster children ‘under threat’ from budget cuts


Government funding cuts to local authority budgets are putting the wellbeing of foster children at risk, survey finds.

Millions invested by Whitehall into helping vulnerable children


Hundreds of millions will be invested to support vulnerable children and families, the education secretary announced yesterday.

Liverpool foster carers to be exempt from council tax


Foster carers working directly for Liverpool City Council will no longer have to pay council tax.

Rehab company to run children’s homes in Birmingham


Birmingham City Council has selected the Priory Group to run five of its residential children’s homes.

Rise in number of children missing from foster care warns report


The number of children going missing from foster care rose by almost a fifth in the last year, according to the latest report from Ofsted.

Being in foster care can boost GCSEs grades, finds research


Children who are fostered do better at school than those who live with their families while receiving social work support, according to new research.

Council explores new fostering service


Peterborough City Council has proposed setting up new partnerships to improve services for young people in care.

Young care leavers being ‘cut adrift’ warn MPs


Vulnerable young people leaving local authority care are not receiving the help and support they need, a new report from the Public Accounts Committee has warned.

Councils told to 'weigh up all options' when safeguarding children


Councils have been reminded to consider all the options available when safeguarding vulnerable children to avoid making ‘knee-jerk reactions’.

Council issues urgent plea for foster carers


Islington Council has issued an appeal for more foster carers to help with unaccompanied asylum-seeker children.

Council offers staff extra time off for fostering


Coventry City Council has announced it will give its staff an extra five days of leave if they are applying to be a foster carer.

FOI request exposes upheaval experienced by foster children


A freedom of information request has revealed that a quarter of foster children have to move home at least twice a year.

Children in care should stay until 25 says commissioner


Young people should be allowed to stay in care until they are 25 years old as thousands are leaving before they are ready, a new survey has revealed.

Children 'at risk' due to unregistered private fostering


Local authorities are not being notified of the majority of private fostering arrangements, according to new research.

Foster children moved too many times warns charity


Nearly half of teenagers in foster care are already living with their third family, according to a new survey.

Councils triple number of special guardianship orders


An investigation has revealed that that the number of councils placing babies under a special guardianship order has tripled in the past two years.

Norfolk given £1m to develop child care project


Over £1m of government funds has been awarded to a Norfolk County Council project designed to prevent 180 children coming into care every year.

Dog adoption blacklist barking up the wrong tree, charity warns


An adoption charity has launched a best practice guide to prevent foster children being denied the physical and emotional benefits of having a pet.

Charity calls for research on cost of siblings separated in care


Local authorities have been urged to provide data on the number of siblings separated in care by a charity, after figures show it costs the UK economy £800m a year.

Council not liable for foster care abuse finds court


A judge has ruled a local authority can not be held legally responsible for abuse that happened to a woman in foster care and at the hands of her mother’s partner.

Record numbers of children in care, finds watchdog


Numbers of children in care have reached a 20-year high, with the Coalition making ‘no progress’ on improving the system – auditors have warned.

Yearly cost of children going back into care reaches £300m, report says


Some 5,000 children return to care after being reunited with their families at a cost of £300m every year – a report claims.

A third of foster children split from siblings


One in three children placed into foster care have been separated from their siblings, according to new research.

Best practice guide for Staying Put arrangements


A best practice guide to help support foster children who choose to stay in care until they turn 21 has been launched by the Children’s Partnership.

Take children at risk of radicalisation into care, Boris Johnson says


Muslim children who are at risk of being radicalised should be taken into care, London mayor Boris Johnson has said.

Improve data security for vulnerable children, councils told


Sensitive information about vulnerable children is at risk due to 'insecure' links between fostering agencies and councils, a report claims.

Extent of private fostering ‘unknown’ in many areas


Councils have been urged to work with local safeguarding boards and the Government to improve awareness of private fostering.

Adoption campaign begins in Birmingham


Birmingham City Council has launched a campaign to locate local adopters and foster carers, deploying prime-time television advertising and a new website.

Charity warns thousands new foster families needed this year


Nearly 9,000 new foster families will be needed during 2014 to replace the 12% that leave each year, according to new figures.

Charity's plea for children with complex needs


Councils faced with reduced budgets are having to make difficult choices that are often cost driven and not needs led, charity Action for Children has warned.

Report: Three in four foster carers share same values set


Almost three-quarters of foster carers share the same values set, according to a new report published by the Fostering Network charity.

Foster children to stay with families until 21


Councils will be given £40m to allow children in care to stay with foster families until they are 21, the children and families minister Edward Timpson has announced.

Charity warns of ‘huge variation’ in foster carer recruitment


Recruitment of foster carers varies hugely across councils, with some authorities ‘struggling’ to recruit the workforce they need, a report indicates.

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