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Private Fostering Arrangement(4 Posts)
I have a friend who had her niece and nephew placed on an sgo a year ago. There were no other suitable family members so i think she felt obliged to.
Since then the placement has broken down and she cant cope with their needs. Shes contacted ss for support whose idea of support is to place them in full time nursery. This isnt working and my friend has said she cant and doesnt want to do it any more.
Ss have now contacted me to ask if Im willing to be assessed to take the children on, on a private fostering arrangement.
This concerns me for a number of reasons. At ages 2 and 3, surely the children need stability? As far as I know, fostering doesnt offer this. Also - who retains parental responsibility - my friend under the sgo or their biological parents?
I have also been advised that I will receive no financial assistance under this order and the financial assistance they receive now under the sgo would be squashed. If my friend retains PR under an SGO, how can it be squashed?
There are so many unanswered questions and SS arent very forthcoming with replies.
Given I am not a family member, I assume I cannot apply for a more permanent order to secure their long term future? Would I be able to if SS took the case back to court and had the SGO squashed, got a care order for them (along with PR) and placed with me then?
I feel I would like to take these children. Ive been through the process before and have good knowledge of their needs and the hard work to come! However, I do believe all children have a right to security and stability and I am worried that they would be placed with me now and then possibly moved again in the future which, given they have attachment issues already, is no good for either of them.
I am hoping someone will give me some ideas on how to proceed in dealing with ss. Anything I should request (push for!) or ask about.
Thank you in advance.
I think SGO can be either family or family friends. There is also kinship care with extended family or family friends. I suggest you talk to SS, or their sw if they still have one, and ask about being assessed yourself for either an SGO or kinship care.
The difference I can see is that with an SGO the carer has pr and funding is through individual assement and with kinship can SS keep pr and there is funding available. This isn't an area I have a lot of knowledge on, so maybe someone else can add to this?
Private fostering is when children are placed with someone who is no relation and this is a private arrangement made by the carer; in this case the special guardian. She would retain PR. The LA would have no PR. She would still be responsible for them. I expect that you will be expected to apply for benefits and your friend either to give her allowance to you or indeed it may end. I wouldnt pursue on this basis. You could request to be assessed as a connected persons foster career. The children could then be placed s20 with your friends agreement. This is similar to private fostering but the children would be classed as being in cars (they wouldn't with private fostering) and they would be rigorously be reviewed by a IRO. You would be assessed as a foster carer. The local authority could also apply to discharge the SGO and request a carer order; to place with you under connected persons. Ultimately if this goes well you could then seek an SGO. The latter is definitley the better option as there is better monitoring of this, there is oversight, there is thorough assessment and if a SGO is granted this will provide security for the children.
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