Consistently Outstanding since 2013

What is respite foster care?

Respite Foster Care

If you can care for a child for a few days or a couple of weeks, respite fostering could be for you. 

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What is respite foster care?

Respite is a very short-term type of fostering, providing other foster families or birth families with a well-deserved break - often over weekends or during school holidays. Respite foster carers look after children for a few days or maybe a couple of weeks, allowing the child’s regular guardians to rest and recharge their batteries.

The child is always at the heart of every short-term foster placement to ensure their needs are met and a trusting relationship is established.

The benefits of respite for parents

Fostering a child or young person has its challenges, so it’s important that everyone gets a chance to relax and take some time out.

  • Respite foster care allows foster parents to rest, which leads to less stress and ultimately a healthier environment for the child.
  • For foster parents with birth children, you'll get time to tend to the needs of your children without having your day-to-day fostering duties.
  • If you have a child with very complex needs, respite allows you to unwind from your extremely demanding role.

The benefits of respite care for children

It’s normal to need a break from those you live with, and it’s no different for foster children. If the child visits the same respite foster carers or has regular weekend foster care in place, this gives them a bigger support network and extended fostering family. It also allows them to meet new people and see new places – all adding to a richer life experience.

New to fostering?

Download our Complete Guide to the Fostering Process to discover everything you need to know. 

Respite for parents who foster with Fostering People

Respite is something that we offer all of our fostering families. When you foster with Fostering People, you’ll receive 14 nights paid respite a year pro-rota, and respite foster parents can take this in one block or a series of shorter breaks.

Our full-time foster parents often provide respite when they have a gap between placements or have a vacancy alongside a current foster child. By using our full-time foster parents, it has the advantage that young people often know the family they are going to be staying with, so respite seems more like a mini holiday or a sleepover.

Specialising in respite family foster care

We do have foster parents who only provide respite fostering. It’s ideal for people who can’t foster full time but want to make a difference and can be flexible with their time. If this sounds like you and you’d like to find out more about this type of fostering, please get in touch. 

Frequently asked questions

What do I need to become a respite foster carer?

You need to be over the age of 21, have a spare room in your home and be in a good position to look after a child or young person. 

What is respite foster care?

Respite foster care gives parents a short break from fostering. Another foster family looks after the child in care for a few days up to a couple of weeks, allowing parents to recharge their batteries and unwind.

How much do you get paid for respite foster care?

We offer all of our foster parents a generous financial allowance for looking after a child, even for short-term foster placements. The pay varies, so use our finance calculator to get an idea of how much you could receive.

Will I receive any specialist training?

Yes, we believe fostering is a journey – and the more you know, the more you’ll get out of it. That’s why we provide ongoing training opportunities for both our foster carers and our staff. Before you’re approved as a carer, you’ll attend a preparation course designed to get you and your family ready to foster. And once approved, you’ll take part in our comprehensive training programme.

Every foster child is an individual, that’s why we offer various kinds of fostering placements.

The types of foster care placements you're offered will depend on your personal preferences and circumstances, but many of our foster parents are approved to offer more than one type of placement.

See other placement types

Take your first step to becoming a foster parent today

If you’re interested in becoming a foster parent and would like to learn more, then we’d love to hear from you.

Simply fill in the form below and one of our friendly team will be in touch.

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Suite D, The Point,
Welbeck Road, West Bridgford,
Nottingham, NG2 7QW