Fostering siblings helps keep brothers and sisters together. For children coming into care, often the only support network or constant presence they have experienced comes from their siblings. To be placed in a foster home along with brothers and sisters retains a connection to family, and can bring feelings of familiarity, comfort and wellbeing.
Sometimes keeping siblings together can be difficult for logistical reasons, such as a need for each sibling to have their own bedroom should they not be able to share. Also, some brothers and sisters cannot be placed together due to concerns of behaviour or risk. However, in most instances we strive to keep siblings together as much as possible.
As a charity, we reinvest any surplus income in order to provide more training and support for our carers who are able to foster sibling groups.
Being able to provide a home for siblings and keep them together is one of the most valuable and rewarding types of fostering that you can do.
Fostering sibling groups can sometimes be challenging and demanding, but it is also extremely rewarding. In a recent survey of local authorities, 45% of sibling groups in care were split up – with more than 12,000 children separated from at least one of their siblings. We are looking for more foster carers who are able to give brothers and sisters a stable family home, particularly those who can care for the larger sibling groups.
Could you foster sibling groups of two children – or more?
Fostering siblings is different to caring for a single child. To start with, you will need more than one spare bedroom (all foster children need their own private space). Whilst same-sex siblings may be able to share in some circumstances, this will not always be the case.
Having the time and energy for each child is also very important. Children will arrive with different needs, and as a foster carer your role will be to ensure that those needs are met for all children in your care.
Foster carers are highly skilled people, and our fees and allowances reflect this.
If you join our fostering team, you will receive fees and allowances for each child in your care. Whilst the final fee you receive may be subject to other factors, such as age of the children and the complexity of their needs, you could receive up to £450 per week, per child.
You will also receive additional payments for children’s birthdays, holidays and religious festivals. Additionally, we also pay long service awards and a Recommend a Friend fee (if you recommend someone who then goes on to be an approved foster carer with us).
Read more about our fostering fees and allowances.
All foster carers receive the same general training, but as carers who are able to foster sibling groups there will be additional training and guidance.
An example of some specific training you might receive if fostering sibling groups is learning to deal with a potential situation of older siblings who have adopted the role of primary carer to their younger brothers and sisters.
Also, siblings may arrive with set behavioural patterns, due to the group having to adjust and cope with their previous living situation. Our training will prepare you and help you to care for and support siblings.
Read more about our fostering training.
All foster carers at TACT receive our comprehensive support, which includes being allocated your own dedicated Supervising Social Worker and full 24/7 support.
As a foster carer who is providing care for sibling groups, we will be able to provide additional support, along with strategies to help you care for multiple children. We also operate carer support groups, giving you the opportunity to meet other TACT foster carers who are caring for siblings.
Because we reinvest surplus income into providing more support for our fostering households, we are able to go above and beyond and develop innovative support services. Our aim is to ensure that you have plenty of resources around you, should you have a question or need some help or advice.
Read more about our support.
All children in foster care are in need of a safe, secure home. Keeping siblings together in foster care will ensure that they retain a familiar connection with family during their time in care. It could also be the most rewarding thing you ever do.
If you feel that you could change the lives of young people, you can make a no obligation enquiry today by completing the enquiry form on this page. Our team of enquiry officers will talk you through the process of becoming a foster carer with TACT. We are a charity, so we place no pressure on anyone to apply. Fostering needs to be the right choice for you and your household.