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Going to panel (fostering) next week and already SS have mentioned someone to us

(19 Posts)
Lauriefairycake Thu 07-Jun-07 19:30:54

I'm a little concerned about how little we know about her - literally a few paragraphs of information.

And also they want what they now class (it's changed since we started the process) as short term fostering - but now it could be up to adulthood (instead of previously it was months not years)

So I'm basically being asked "Would you like this 8 year old to come and live with you for the next ten years"

Is this normal - should I know more ??

lisad123 Thu 07-Jun-07 19:35:35

Yes you should know more.
Some foster carers are short term some are long term and some dont mind. If you only want to do short term you will have to be very firm about this.
You need more info ont he child to decide if she will fit into your family. Im guessing its an emgerency placement.
Ask as many questions as you need to make your decision.

Good Luck


KristinaM Thu 07-Jun-07 20:41:18

i agree with lisa. But theyprobably wont tell you more til you go to panel, as you are not yet approved carers.

you need to remember that they are DESPERATE for foster carers and YOU are teh ones who need to decide if a child will fit in your family and if you can meet the child's needs.

personally i woudl be wondering why they are putting a child who needs a PERMANENT placement with a carers who want to do short term? What is the long term plan for thsi child??

have you spoken to your key worker about it??

Lauriefairycake Thu 07-Jun-07 20:44:20

They have 'redefined' in the last two years what 'short term' is - it now means up to a long time.

But they are still putting people through panel under categories of 'short term' and 'long term'.

The whole thing sounds like a fudge to me. We have only been assessed as short term carers - its the DEFINITION that has now changed and hence why they are asking.

In real terms there is now no difference between short and long term.

KristinaM Thu 07-Jun-07 20:49:37

do YOU want to have a child for 10 years? you might as well adopt him/her ! If they knwo thsi child has no chance of returning to their own family they need to put him/her in a permanant family. Is that what you want?

what are you going to do when they turn 18 and they have lived with you for 10 years? Put them out???

it sounds pretty dodgy to me....

KristinaM Thu 07-Jun-07 20:52:27

why are they wanting to move the child from their current placement?

lisad123 Thu 07-Jun-07 22:27:24

Sorry Kristina but if children cant be return to family sometimes longterm fostercare is the plan, and classed as perm family.

KristinaM Thu 07-Jun-07 23:22:58

i understand that lisa, i just thought that the OP wanted to do short term fostering and not permenance

it doesnt really matter if teh agency has changed the name - there is a HUGE difference between short term and perm. This family seem to have signed up for one and they are alreday being pressurised to do another. Or maybe i am misreading teh original post????

i think its pretty dodgy to appraoch a family a few days befroe panel and ask them if they want to take a perm placement when they are approved and want_to do short term . surely the agency shoudl be seeking a family who are committed to long term or permenance?

lisad123 Thu 07-Jun-07 23:37:22

I completely agree Kristina, need to find long term foster placements rather than short term ones. Sorry misread post. God I must be tired

Lauriefairycake Fri 08-Jun-07 08:50:17

None of you are misreading this. We are being put forward to panel as short term foster carers. If we wanted to be long term carers we would have to go through the process again and be approved again.

We are also being told this child is not coming to us long term or permanent as she is not subject to a care order but she may in reality stay her whole life.

I cannot see this is in the interests of the child - we would not be her guardians yet we may be responsible for her until she is 18.

Flower3554 Fri 08-Jun-07 08:55:56

Ok, Dh and I are short term foster carers and as I understand this term it can mean anything from a few hours to however long it takes Social sevices to find a permanent placement or the child returns home.

You should not be "used" to take a child until they are independant if you are short term, thats what long term carers are for.

We have fostered a child from 2 days old until he was 3.5 years old because it was a complicated case, but it is not unusual, in my experience, to have a placement for 2-3 years.

Social services don't seem to have any sense of urgency IMO.

chipkid Fri 08-Jun-07 08:59:43

It is often the Court process that slows matters down. Cases are supposed to be dealt with in a certain time scale but often get delayed and delayed. It is in those cases that a short-term placement can become extremely long!

Lauriefairycake Fri 08-Jun-07 09:01:38


I think I'm wavering so much because it feels so uncertain. I'm not sure how easy it would be to disconnect emotionally from a child i had looked after for 3 years (until SS found permanent foster carers).

And the opposite of that which is they dont look for long term but instead we get her for ten years but instead have the pretence of always looking for the ten years.

Does that make sense???

Flower3554 Fri 08-Jun-07 10:21:17

Of course it makes sense, you're a human being, how could you not connect with a child who is to all intents a member of your family.

I have people say to me all the time, rembering that we now only take newborn babies, "how do you part with them"

The answer, because I have no choice in the matter. I know there are foster carers who can't bear to part with their placements, my best friend is one of them, and so apply to adopt.

That was never an option for us, we can, or could, have children of our own, how could I justify keeping a child who could have been the only chance some families would ever have had to have a child.

You do disconnect to some extent when a child moves on, very often because you connect with the next child who needs you.

It's an ongoing thing, I have met up with a child we cared for for a year who had been placed for adoption and while it was lovely to see him, I felt no connection with him at all. He had his own family now and didn't need me. HTH

Please cat me if you need to talk off the board.

KristinaM Fri 08-Jun-07 20:30:20

I am not familiar with english childcare law...but surely if there is no care order the the child's parent/s could come along at any time and ask for her back? Which would be fine of course if they could meet the child's needs and it was permanent. But its not unknown for parents to have a chidl back and forward many times, depending on what is happening in their lives

and each time you get them back they are more upset, insecure and acting out. and of course their education is also disrupted

lisad123 Sat 09-Jun-07 21:08:33

Children can be placed under sec20 and your right it means a parent can take child back if they want. It could also be that court has already been though and therefore a normal court order has been done and dusted and another sort of order is in place.

I hope that makes sense.

Emily79 Tue 21-Aug-07 09:20:52

Hi! I know this thread is kind of old now but I'm new here, about to go to panel myself, and am interested to know how things have worked out so far. Would love to hear an update

nappyaddict Thu 27-Sep-07 14:03:03

do you have to go on a course to be a foster carer?

KristinaM Sun 30-Sep-07 18:54:16

nappy addict - you need to approach the agencies you are thinking of working for. they will all have slighty different requiremenst although the basics will be the same.

it will also depends on what type of carers they are needing at the moment

eg if you live in a more rural area, you will need to drive and have access to a car, but maybe not in a city or if you only care for young babies

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