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Why you should choose Foster Portsmouth?

Fostering is one of the most varied, challenging and yet rewarding jobs you can do. When you become a foster carer, you’re not only making a difference to their lives… but yours too. The most fulfilling new chapter in their lives, according to many of our foster parents, began when they decided to foster.

If you decide to foster with us, you’re supported every step of the way. Starting from your initial inquiry, continuing through the assessment stage, and ending with your panel date and subsequent placements. You’ll always have access to the help, training, and support required to give a child a better future.

Many of our foster parents choose to foster with Foster Portsmouth for many years. In addition to our family-based strategy, our success in keeping foster carers stems from our investment in people.

By giving our foster carers the tools they need to succeed—continuous support, a strong placement matching process, generous foster care pay (known as a fostering allowance), and a varied and full training calendar—we make sure the young people in their care have a genuine chance to thrive.

Key reasons to choose Foster Portsmouth

  • Become part of a small but mighty local authority
  • Access to the award winning Mockingbird model of care
  • Excellent allowances and skills fees
  • 24/7 wraparound support
  • A mentoring scheme to link new foster carers with an experienced foster carer
  • Free, varied and regular training to continue your professional development
  • A strong matching process which increases placement stability
  • Social events and support groups for you, your family and your foster child(ren)
  • Our 'Refer a Friend' scheme and the chance to earn £500 for each successful referral
  • Free membership to The Fostering Network and all of the perks that come with it

We are a ‘small but mighty’ local authority

Portsmouth is a relatively small local authority (LA) in comparison to our neighbouring LA’s, but because of this our fostering team collaborates closely with our children’s social work team in the same building and on the same floor. We pride ourselves on the excellent communication between our teams and our foster carers.

Our fostering service has a close knit, community feel. If one of our foster parents called our fostering line, the person who answered would almost always recognise the person calling and be able to put them in touch with the person required in a matter of minutes.

We take great pride in the strong relationships we hold with the young persons school, birth families, our own Virtual School, specialised therapists, and CAHMS. Our foster parents are a part of the strong team that all of these connections create around the young person

Cllr Suzy Horton cabinet member for children, families and education talks about fostering for the council

Cllr Suzy Horton, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Education says:

“Portsmouth may be a small local authority compared to others, but that’s what makes us special, we are small but mighty. We’re in a unique position as all the teams connected to a fostered child are based in the same building so they work very closely together and keep closely up to date on the young persons journey. We are able to offer a foster carer the information or support they require very quickly.

Other reasons to become a foster carer with Foster Portsmouth 

Award winning Mockingbird Model

With five constellations already in place and a sixth set to debut this year, we were the South Coast’s pioneers in putting The Mockingbird Family Model into practise.

Mockingbird is a one-of-a-kind wraparound fostering service that acts as an extended family, prioritises placement stability and includes carer and young person support such as sleepovers, social activities and peer support.

Our carer ‘constellations’ consist of six to ten fostering families with a skilled foster carer serving as the ‘hub carer’ at the centre, who is available to assist the fostering families when they require a little extra assistance.

Competitive allowances and fees

We recently increased the fees and allowances for our foster carers to recognise the vital role they play in caring for the children in our care.

Foster carers receive two weekly payments: a skills fee linked to their experience/the training they’ve completed, and an allowance based on the age of the child which covers the day-to-day cost of caring for the children or young person.

Foster carers also receive additional help with holiday, activity, and birthday/religious festival allowances. Certain expenses can also be reclaimed and other support, benefits and discounts are available. The majority of payments that foster carers receive are also tax free.

Comprehensive 24/7 wraparound support

Support is available for our foster carers. We’re available to help you whenever you need it, day or night, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

Outside of our standard office hours, the Hampshire emergency duty team are available to support you.

We invest in professional development 

We’re dedicated to our foster carers ongoing professional development and training is just one of the many levels of support we offer. Our foster carers have access to a variety of training opportunities to help them support the young person in their care and advance and develop as foster parents.

 

Additional discounts and benefits

Foster carers benefit from tax relief and exemptions, as well as support with necessary equipment such as cots or prams, discounts from schemes such as the Portsmouth Leisure Card, and free membership to The Fostering Network and all of the further support and benefits that come with it.

Strong placement matching process

During the assessment process, we’ll really get to know you and your family and will develop a strong understanding about your strengths and the children or young person who will be a good match for you, ultimately increasing placement stability.

When placing a child with a foster family, we consider a range of criteria to ensure the best match possible and secure its success.

 

 

Here’s what our foster carers have to say

 

Rachel & James (foster carers) say:

“It really is a fostering community and everyone in it are genuinely lovely. It includes not just the support of the social workers but also the other foster carers.

“There’s always someone on the end of the phone and there’s an out of hours contact number. The support is endless, everywhere you turn there are different directions for help if you need it.”

foster carer couple Rachel and James smile towards the camera
three female friends smiling at the camera

Amanda (satellite carer) says:

“Being part of the Mockingbird programme has helped me in my fostering journey massively. As a single foster carer, I don’t have anyone at home to get advice from or let off steam too.

“The Mockingbird programme provides a massive amount of support, camaraderie and I’ve made lifelong friendships with the other foster carers in my hub.”

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