Private fostering information for children

Private fostering is a care arrangement for children under 16 (or 18 and you have a disability) where your parents have arranged for you to live with another adult instead of your Mum and Dad. The person who looks after you will not be a close relative.

If you are privately fostered it means that you will be living with a private foster carer in their house for over 28 days.

Why might a child be privately fostered?

  • A child sent to a host family in this country for education or health care by parents who live overseas

  • A teenager living with a friend’s family because they don't get on with their own family

  • A child living with a friend’s family because their parents work or study makes it  difficult to use ordinary day care or after school care

  • A child staying with another family because their parents have separated or divorced

  • A child from overseas staying with a host family while attending a language school or overseas students at boarding school who stay with a host family during the holidays

Your parents and private foster carer must tell Staffordshire County Council if you are living in someone else’s house. Your teacher or doctor could also tell us. You could too!

What will happen next?

The law says that Staffordshire County Council must make sure that you are well cared for where you are living and they will ask a social worker to visit you to see if you are okay. There is a three step process that we will take:

  • Step One: A social worker, who is someone employed by Staffordshire County Council to make sure that children and young people are safe and well, will visit you at your home.

  • Step Two: They will come and see where you live and make sure you are happy living with the private foster carer.

  • Step Three: They will talk to the person looking after you to see if they need any help. They will even get in touch with your parents to make sure they know everything is ok.

We follow these three steps as we have to make sure that all privately fostered children are properly looked after.

Next Steps

To find out more about private fostering download the leaflet below or to tell someone that you think you are privately fostered you can call:

First Response on 0800 1313 126