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Emergency Fostering

When sudden mishaps take place in the lives of regular people, innocent and vulnerable young people can often get caught in unpleasant, even dangerous, situations. This is when emergency fostering can come to the rescue and it can happen at any time of the day or night. There are many reasons why a child can suddenly and unexpectedly need to have the safe refuge of foster care.

A car accident or house fire can remove parents from a family. A sudden devastating illness can have a similar effect. Violence in the household can also make a living arrangement unsafe for a child. These are merely examples. Anything can happen to destroy a household. In such situations, it often happens that more than one child is affected, often there is a baby or older child involved, and you may be called upon to open your arms and your energy to two or more frightened children on very short notice.

Capstone Foster Care is aware of which carers have the extra space, the necessary spare room, for handling urgent situations. While some foster families may prefer being on stand-by for emergency services, often the closest foster family is the better choice and because of this, it is hoped that most foster homes will be able to open their door in such cases.

As the carer, you are called upon to be calm and caring and reassuring to a frightened child who has no idea what will happen to him or her the next day or the day after. His or her security has been shattered, the future is uncertain, and the child is full of fear for what is happening to the parents. The suddenness of the change in the daily routine conspires to create an episode that can upset the child’s sense of safety and security.

Emergency fostering tends to be short, perhaps a day or two, while social workers assess the child’s family situation and, if the circumstances are appropriate, locate family members who may be able to look after the children while the family’s structure is stabilised following a sudden illness, death of a parent, or accident that disrupted the family’s life.

In child protection cases, the child may not be able to return to the home quickly and the fostering can extend into long term care. This means that a foster home should have sufficient spare room available for emergency use and to accommodate when the young person in care is required to remain there for any length of time.

All types of fostering calls for flexibility, compassion, understanding, tact, patience, and commitment to a positive outcome for all children and young people. In emergency situations, when you are asked to rise to the occasion on very short notice these same attributes are needed in abundance.

Capstone Foster Care ensures that you have the help, training, and support whether it is an emergency placement or not. You have the full support of the agency and your allowances are adjusted according to the demands of providing emergency support for a child in need.

For further information, please call us on 0800 012 4004 or simply click here.

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