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fostering types

Parent and child fostering

A Parent and Child arrangement (also known as a P&C placement) is a specialist type of fostering. This enables a parent, or parents, to remain the primary carer to their child/children by entering a foster placement for a specified period (often a minimum of 12 weeks) for the purposes of ongoing assessment, support and guidance.

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What is a Parent and Child (P&C) arrangement? 

These types of arrangements are primarily needed when concerns have been identified around the parent’s ability to meet their child’s needs safely in the community, but it’s felt that, with the right guidance and support, they will be able to gain these skills.

There are many issues that can lead to concerns about a parent’s ability to meet their child’s needs. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Domestic violence
  • Mental health issues
  • Substance misuse
  • Previous care history
  • Learning and/or physical difficulties
  • Being a young parent

In many cases they may be struggling with multiple issues, alongside the pressures of becoming a new parent.

There is no age limit for parents entering a P&C arrangement. The arrangement itself can be for a single parent or both parents together, presenting as a couple who wish to co-parent. Again, there is no specific age a child must be to enter a P&C arrangement however, more often they are children under the age of one. It is possible, in certain circumstances, for a sibling to also be placed alongside, however, this is rare.

What does Parent and Child Fostering involve?

As a Parent & Child Foster Carer you will need to provide a high level of supervision to ensure the safety of both the parent and child in placement. Alongside this, you will need to provide ongoing advice and support to the parents on all aspects of childcare as well as managing and running a home.

This could include but is not limited to:

Feeding

Bathing and cleaning

Safe handling

Sleep routines

Maintaining good health

Demonstrating emotional warmth

Meal planning and cooking

Budgeting

As a Parent and Child Foster Carer you will need to provide accurate and comprehensive records that can be used to aid further learning, as well as inform assessments, and be presented as evidence to the court. You will also be part of the professional network (the team around the child) and will attend regular meetings to review the arrangements' progress.

What support are Parent and Child Foster Carers offered?

At West Sussex County Council, we recognise the specialist role Parent and Child Foster Carers fulfil and that, in order to do so effectively, a clear package of support is needed.

As a Parent and Child Foster Carer with West Sussex you can expect to receive:

Dedicated Supervising Social Worker support

Weekly Social Worker visits for the duration of the placement

Fortnightly placement reviews

Specialist training alongside generic Foster Carer training

Parent and carer support groups

Peer-to-peer support

Day care provision when identified as needed

Out-of-hours support

Parent and Child Foster Carers receive a weekly payment of £1,181.39 per arrangement. This enhanced rate reflects the complexity, time, commitment and demands of this type of fostering.

You will also receive all the other benefits of being a Foster Carer with us. See the pay and allowances and training and support sections for more information.

Frequently asked questions

What skills do you need to be a Parent and Child Foster Carer? 

As a P&C Foster Carer you will be skilled at establishing warm, nurturing relationships based on mutual respect and understanding. You will have an extensive knowledge of child development, an understanding of attachment and the importance of it, and will be able to work collaboratively and constructively with a range of professionals as well as parents.

How much do you get paid as a Parent and Child Foster Carer?

Parent and Child Foster Carers receive a weekly rate of £1,181.39 per arrangement. This enhanced rate reflects the complexity, time, commitment and demands of this type of fostering.

How to apply to become a Parent and Child Foster Carer? 

If you think you have the relevant skills and/or experience to become a P&C Foster Carer, and really feel you could make a difference, please get in touch.

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