Devon County Council’s fostering service, Fostering Devon, is calling for people to consider offering emergency foster care to vulnerable children.
The new ‘Emergency Bed Scheme’ provides rapid support for children and young people, aged between 0 and 18 years old, who are unable to remain living in their current home and need an immediate place of safety at a time of crisis.
Foster carers providing emergency placements must have no other children at home so that they can accept any child or young person that needs a bed for up to seven nights.
The scheme is run on a rota, with carers required to be on duty for two weeks at a time, followed by two weeks off. While on-duty, foster carers can be contacted day or night and will be paid £489.09 per week, regardless of a child being placed with them or not. Foster carers will be paid a retainer of £150 per week for the two weeks off-duty and will not be expected to take any emergencies during this time.
Emma Nobes, Fostering Devon Manager, said:
“There are lots of different situations where a child or young person might need a home at short notice, for example if a parent is taken into hospital and there is no one else to care for them, or if there is a child protection issue in the family.
“There’s no opportunity for emergency foster carers to meet or find out a great deal about a child or young person before they are brought to their home, but they have a very important part to play in helping that child to feel safe and secure at what is likely to be a stressful and difficult time for them.
“It’s a tough ask. Whatever the circumstances, any child or young person who can’t stay at home is going to be frightened and anxious, so we need dedicated foster carers to step up and provide a calm and reassuring safe place for them to stay at short notice when they are at their most vulnerable while we make a longer-term plan.”
Want to know more? Please visit the Fostering Devon website – Emergency Bed Scheme – Fostering in Devon – Fostering in Devon .
Or if you would like someone to call you, please leave your name and number and a member of the fostering team will be in touch. Your conversation will be in confidence and in no way commits you to apply to become a foster carer.