There are about 70,000 children in foster care across the UK. The number of foster carers registered with local authorities and independent fostering agencies falls short in comparison, unfortunately. If you wish to step up and become a part of the foster care system, then now’s as good a time to do so as any.
It does not matter if you have the financial means to take care of a foster child or not, as long as you have a true desire to help children in need. All expenses related to a foster child will be paid for by the LA/IFA that a foster care provider signs up with. These payments are called fostering allowances and we are about to discuss them in more detail.
What is a Fostering Allowance?
Fostering allowances are stipends that all foster carers receive from their local authority or the independent fostering agency they signed up with. The amount is meant to cover the cost of care and reward the carer for his/her time and dedication toward the foster children.
How Much Money Do Foster Carers Receive as an Allowance?
This is an impossible question to answer without knowing important details such as the kind of care a child needs, the foster carer’s applicable qualifications, the location, and the fostering agency they are working with. Good IFAs provide extensive training to their foster carers and make sure their skilled efforts are respected with a generous fostering allowance allotment. See the kind of fostering allowance you can expect by using the allowance calculator on orangegrovefostercare.co.uk
What is Included in the Cost of Care Coverage?
All essential costs directly related to a foster child’s care should be covered in a foster carer’s allowance. This includes but is not limited to the cost of food, clothes, shoes, medication, utilities, toiletries, education, commuting, insurance, furniture, and any other specific but necessary needs directly related to the foster child.
However, there are limits to how much the LA or your IFA will pay for even the necessary expenses. Therefore, it’s highly advisable that you plan the budget in accordance with the allotted fostering allowance. If that feels too difficult, contact your LA or IFA to discuss your options. If things don’t work out even after a clear conversation, don’t be shy about exploring your options in other nearby fostering agencies.
Can You Generate an Income from Fostering Allowances?
Fostering should not be treated strictly as just another profession because it must be about the child’s welfare above all else, every single time. Nevertheless, the answer is yes, foster carers can certainly generate an income from their daily/weekly/monthly/yearly fostering allowances, even after it has been used to pay for the cost of care first.
If you become a foster carer, taking care of the children in your care will need to be your first precedence. It is very difficult, if not impossible for foster carers to find a full-time job where they will be able to prioritise their fostering obligations over their professional responsibilities. Therefore, it’s okay to expect financial support for prioritizing your time and effort towards the children in care, as long as it’s not the main expectation.