Siblings in Foster Care

Did you know that, by the time children are 11 years old, they’ve spent roughly 33% of their free time together? Even as they get older, siblings can still spend up to 17 hours per week socialising and spending time with family. Unfortunately, different family dynamics and personal situations can often lead to children and young people being removed from the home. 

Entering the care system can be an unimaginably traumatic and unsettling experience for children and young people, and it’s not uncommon that siblings are separated in cases where it would be most beneficial for them to stay together. 

Whatever the reasons, sibling separation, in addition to entering the care system can cause further trauma in many cases and result in the young person displaying various responses and challenges, along with difficulties building and maintaining relationships.

There’s a range of factors that contribute to siblings in care being separated, including;

Lack of Foster Carers

Whilst the number of children entering foster care in the UK is increasing year on year, the number of foster carers simply isn’t keeping up with this demand. As of 31 March 2021, the number of foster carers in England increased 4% increase since 2015 however, the number of children in foster care grew by 11% during this time period.

As a charity childcare service, Fair Ways invest so much into our foster families and the different services and support we provide for our young people, this is just one of the reasons why we received an ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted rating at our last inspection. Fair Ways are one of the very few IFA’s in our area to hold this rating, the highest achievable from the regulator. This speaks to the levels of service, support, education and training we provide.

If you’d like more information on becoming a Fair Ways Foster Carer, get in touch here.

Lack of Space

Foster carers are required to have a spare bedroom at home, which we understand isn’t the case for many families and couples in England. Where siblings are under the age of 10, they can share the same bedroom provided we feel this is the right approach to take.

Trauma Factors

In some cases, children can be suffering from various levels of trauma, resulting in their own individual high complex needs that would potentially make placing siblings together difficult. Where this is the case, we try to help build and maintain these relationships through facilitating regular contact, meetings and support.

Fostering with Fair Ways

The gift of fostering for both young people and foster parents is beyond compare. A safe, loving and encouraging environment has an incredibly positive impact on the lives of foster children, and helping provide this is at the heart of everything we do at Fair Ways.

There’s a whole host of benefits when siblings are placed into foster care together. They can help bring familiarity to unexpected situations which can make a huge difference when it comes to adjusting to their new surroundings.

They offer guidance, support, friendship and a little bit of stability in difficult circumstances. Additionally, children who have had more challenging backgrounds can have an incredibly strong bond, and that’s something we’re keen to nurture.

We fully understand that becoming a foster parent Is a huge commitment to make, which is why we offer unrivalled support and training designed to assist our foster families, allowing everyone to easier settle into their new routine, lifestyle and really enjoy their fostering journey.

Fair Ways Fostering prides itself in ensuring that wherever possible and appropriate we will do all we can to facilitate, promote and maintain sibling contact.

Paula Lewis, Social Worker at Fair Ways

If you’d like to speak with us about joining the Fair Ways Family, get in touch with a member of our team today.

Enquire to become a foster carer

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