What is foster care?

Foster care, also referred to as out-of-home care, is when care is provided for children or young people at times when their own parents or families cannot do so.

The main aim of foster care is to provide a safe, stable and secure home environment for these children.

Except in emergencies, foster care is usually only organised after other options within the child's own family and other contacts have been explored and exhausted.

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about becoming a foster carer call us on1300 WEFOSTER (1300 933 678) or fill out our carer enquiry form.

Foster care options in the ACT

Some children only stay in foster care for a few weeks or months, others may not be able to ever return home and need a full commitment of care until they are 18 years old and over.

As a foster carer, you can choose what type of care you would like to offer – whether that’s immediate, short stay or long term care. Whichever you choose, your offer is always highly valued.

If you are unsure about the type of care you can provide, please feel free to discuss with us.

Types of foster care and terminology can vary a little from state to state. In Canberra, we have four types of foster care. These include:

  1. Short term or crisis foster care
  2. Respite
  3. Long term permanent
  4. Concurrent foster care

The type of foster care you decide on will depend on your own personal circumstances so take time to read through each one and also read about other carers experiences who have provided that type of care. In the longer term, many carers end up providing more than one type of care so it’s good to know them all before you make any decisions about what you want to do. If you are not sure, there is no pressure, we can work through the options with you and you will learn more as you do your foster care training with us before you have to make any decisions.

Pathway to becoming a foster carer

The application process happens over many months to ensure you are ready to provide foster care and to match you with the right type of foster care and a child that best suits you and your family. The process in brief is:

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about becoming a foster carer call us on 1300 WEFOSTER (1300 933 678) or fill out our carer enquiry form.

What support will you get?

Lots!

Be assured you will never be alone in your foster care experience. You gain access to:

  1. case work support for the child
  2. carer support person for you
  3. 24 crisis contact numbers in case of an emergency
  4. Financial assistance to meet the child’s expenses, and ongoing training opportunities e.g. Circle of Security, Trauma Based Care, etc.

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about becoming a foster carer call us on 1300 WEFOSTER (1300 933 678) or fill out our carer enquiry form.