Types of Fostering
Short Term Foster Carers
Short term foster carers provide short term placements to children/young people who are in the care of Milton Keynes Council. The period of care might be for a few days, a few months or sometimes longer, carers need to be flexible about how long a child can stay with them.
Permanent Foster Carers
Permanent foster carers provide a permanent home to children and young people where the plan for the child / young person is not to return home to their family and for whom adoption is not the best option. It is expected that the child / young person would live with foster carers until they reach 18 years and in some circumstances, longer. The important factor for foster carers who offer permanence is that the child/ young person becomes a part of the fostering family.
Supported Lodgings is shared accommodation where you will provide a young person with practical and emotional support with a view to increasing their confidence and readiness to move onto their own home.
From the age of 16 some young people decide that they want to be more independent than within a foster home, but they either lack confidence or the skills required for them to move into their own bedsit/hostel accommodation. Supported Lodgings offers them the opportunity to experience elements of independence within a supportive and encouraging environment.
Reasons why a young person may enter Supported Lodgings:
In Milton Keynes we have a constant need for carers for young people aged 16 to 21 who are unable to live at home with their families. This could be for many different reasons – for example:
• Young person is leaving the care of the Milton Keynes Council
• Young person has been asked to leave the family home
• Family breakdown
• Young person has been in trouble
• Young person has been misusing drugs and/or alcohol and needs a supportive environment to help them change
• Risk of harm
Young people who are unable to live at home can be extremely vulnerable. In many respects these young people may appear to be confident but they do not have the skills and confidence to live alone successfully.
Without the security of a safe place to live and the guidance of caring and responsible adults there is a strong possibility that many of these young people may fail – ending up jobless and homeless and with little hope of things getting better.
How can you help?
If you have some experience of having adolescents or working previously with adolescents, it would certainly be useful, but most of all we need supported lodgings providers who can appreciate the difficulties which these young people have encountered. As a result of their experiences, some young people can present quite challenging behaviour and therefore lodgings providers will need to be able to offer commitment, patience and be sympathetic.
- Have a spare room in your house.
- Are willing to welcome a young person in need into your home.
- Are able to provide encouragement, support and guidance.
- Are aged over 25 years old.
- Employed or not employed.
- Have internet and computer/laptop access
You could make a positive difference to the life of a young person.
Because of different personal experiences, individual skills and levels of confidence, every young person has different needs.
Some youngsters will just need a safe place to live while others will need a higher degree of support and encouragement to help them develop self-confidence. They may be reasonably independent and able to look after themselves (doing their own cooking, washing up etc) whilst others will need help to develop these practical skills in order that when they are ready to obtain their own accommodation they can maintain a tenancy successfully.
As a Supported Lodgings Carer you will need to be flexible enough to provide the level of support needed by the young person in your care.
Once you have read about the types of fostering, we hope that you will be more informed about the options that might be open to you and more importantly, help you decide whether you can open your home to a child or young person in need.
How to apply to be a carer
Complete the Online Enquiry Form if you feel you are able to offer a caring, loving and safe environment to care for children. Once the Online Enquiry Form is completed a member of the fostering team will normally contact you within two working days.
Last Updated: 31 May 2019