Our fostering service
Children can come into care for many different reasons that requires them to have alternative care. Sometimes this is for a short period of time while for some children they may live with their foster family for their entire childhood and beyond.
Children and young people who are looked after have experienced trauma often through separation and loss, abuse or neglect. Each child is an individual with specific needs, therefore needing bespoke care. This is why fostering is vital - for many children and young people fostering is often their first positive experience of family life.
Break's fostering service is a small agency looking to grow the number of foster carers and children working with us within Norfolk. The young people involved will have experienced significant trauma prior to their placement with Break, and may struggle to trust and form attachments with adults because of their previous experiences.
Together with the fostering team, our foster carers nurture and support young people through the next phase of their lives as we work together to start the healing process. At Break we believe that no matter a child's start to their life there's no limit to what they can achieve. Our foster carers are very much part of that journey.
All children and young people in Break's fostering services will have had a difficult and troubling start to their lives, and this often means that trusting and forming attachments with their care givers is really hard. This is why we think therapeutic parenting is so important.
Therapeutic parenting describes a style of care designed to support a child or young person in developing feelings of safety and connectedness. Rather than managing behaviour, therapeutic parenting sees behaviour as a form of communication.
If you want to learn more about becoming a foster carer please take some time to read through our Fostering Guide. If having read this guide you still feel ready to take your first step to fostering, then please get in touch to book in a phone call to find out more.
"We looked at every fostering agency in the area but wanted to work with one which shared our values - Break was the only one for us. It is definitely not a 'for-profit' operation and everyone in it really cares about the children."
Break foster carer
Fostering with Break (at a glance)
- Therapeutic parenting principles are at the centre of our service.
- Foster placements for children aged up to eighteen, with children currently in the service aged between seven and sixteen.
- Long-term relationships with foster carers, with many young people still in contact after leaving care.
- All children and young people attend school or college.
- Three quarters of children access extra therapeutic support through Break's own therapists, counsellors or via third party services.
- Two young people are trained baristas on CoffeeBreak, a project run by Break designed to provide a safe work experience environment for those supported by the charity.
- Regular meet ups with the fostering team and other foster carers to help form relationships with peers.
- A group for any birth children of foster carers.
- Young people can access the wraparound support Break provides - digital detoxes, residential camps and other opportunities to help build a support network outside of their foster home, increase confidence and try something new whilst providing respite to carers and their families.
- When you have a child in your care you will earn in the region of £600 per week.
Break Fostering FAQs
Can I carry on working?
Foster caring is a full-time job, and in our experience we find that continuing to work alongside your role as a foster carer is difficult. Your role will involve being available for meetings and appointments during the day as well as attending review meetings, medical appointments and training for instance.
In a two person fostering household we would expect one of the partnership to be a full-time foster carer.
You will be paid for fostering, and as part of your decision to become a foster carer we would ask you to consider whether this role can work for you financially.
Do I get paid for fostering?
Yes, you will be remunerated for your fostering role. On average when you have a child in your care you will earn in the region of £600 per week plus some travelling expenses. If you need more information about how much you will be paid, please ask a member of the team who will be very happy to help.
How old do I need to be to foster?
Foster carers need to be 21 or older. There is no upper age limit - you just need to enough energy and enthusiasm to keep up with the young people in your care.
Does it matter if I'm single, married or in a relationship?
No relationship status disqualifies you from being a foster carer. No matter your relationship status, the impact on your friends and family will be part of the Form F assessment process to see the impact on your support network.
Can I foster if I already have children? Or if I don't have children?
Absolutely - we have worked with lots of foster carers who already have children. Some of those children are still living at home, whilst others decide to take on fostering once their own children have grown up. You can also foster if you have no children of your own.
Do I need a spare room?
Yes, the child in your care will need their own room.
Can I have pets and foster?
Yes. Any pets in the home will be looked at as part of your Form F assessment. You will need to consider how your pet responds to children.
What happens about holidays?
Normally, we would expect foster carers to take the child they are caring for with them on holiday.
All foster carers will have a support care plan which is led by the child they are caring for. This care plan could include overnight stays where the child would stay away from your home but it would depend on their needs. Break has part-time and support carers to help in such instances.
What happens once a child turns 18?
We always work with you and your child's Local Authority social worker to plan for your child post 18. If you would like your child to remain living with you post 18 then they can do so under a Staying Put arrangement. You will no longer be in a foster care role for this child but the LA will continue to fund you at a different rate for you to continue to offer your child a home.
Alternatively, if your child wishes to move on at 18 or you are not in a position to be able to offer Staying Put, Break have a service called Staying Close, Staying Connected for residential care leavers which is being expanded to include young people in fostering (Fostering Futures). The service supports them in their first steps towards fully independent living. We are able to offer them a home, and a Break Transition Worker to support them as they move out of care and into their own accommodation.
As the young person approaches the age of 18, we will work together with them and you to explore options for them to move on to. Each individual will be different and we will work together to find the best option for the young person.
Any young person in Break's services benefits from our lifelong offer. It's our promise that no matter how old they may be, we are always here for them to turn to