Thinking about fostering siblings?

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When siblings in foster care stay together, it can make a real difference to their happiness and how smoothly they settle into their foster home. 

Benefits of keeping siblings together in foster care

Keeping siblings together in foster care has been shown to lead to a more successful and stable placement, which in turn, means more long-lasting positive outcomes for their futures.

Siblings give each other emotional, social and psychological support, and it’s a bond like no other. They likely have shared trauma and have similar worries and fears, which means they can lean on each other to give comfort and support. This will help immensely as they try to make sense of what is happening as they move into foster care. Here are some benefits of placing siblings together in foster care.

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There are many sibling groups who desperately need a loving foster home where they can grow and heal from their pasts together. Discover everything you need to know about fostering by downloading our brochure today.

fostering siblings

4 Reasons to keep siblings together

1. Attachment

Family is such an integral part of everyone’s life, and brothers and sisters share a strong, solid bond that is often unbreakable. They might squabble and have different interests, but the connection they have runs deep. As you welcome siblings into your home, the experience is made less daunting because they already have an established relationship with someone in the home.

2. Security

Moving into their first foster home can be confusing and distressing for children in care. When sibling separation in foster care occurs, they might feel completely helpless without their brothers or sisters. That’s why we work hard to give them the stability and consistency they will crave after experiencing disruption. Fostering siblings together means they have a security blanket in each other, and can give more intimate, familiar comfort they might not feel ready to seek out in a foster parent.

3. Identity

A child’s culture, faith or ethnic background is integral to their identity. Having their brother or sister by their side can help to strengthen their sense of self, which is something many foster children struggle with when entering the care system.

4. Connection to family

Maintaining contact with a child’s birth family is an important duty for foster parents. It can be upsetting though, especially if the parents fail to show up and leave the children feeling rejected. By keeping siblings together in foster care, they have a closeness to their previous life, making the losses they have experienced potentially easier to deal with.

Fostering siblings: allowance and rewards

At Orange Grove, we offer a generous fostering allowance for siblings to help you cover the costs of caring for multiple children and also reward you for your dedication and hard work.

We understand and appreciate it’s a challenging role, so it’s important to us that you get the financial recognition you deserve. Also, you’ll get other allowances for religious holidays and birthdays, as well as discounts to some of your favourite shops, restaurants and family experiences.

Why are siblings separated in foster care?

Keeping siblings together in foster care will always be the desired outcome, however, unfortunately, it’s not always possible. There are a number of reasons why sibling separation in foster care happens. The outcome of where they are placed is based on what the Local Authority deems best for the children. Here are the main reasons why:

  • There aren’t enough foster parents in the UK to care for the number of new children coming into the care system, which is roughly 30,000 each year.
  • To foster multiple children at once, you often need more than one spare bedroom, which many foster families simply don’t have. Although in certain circumstances, some Local Authorities may allow siblings to share a bedroom in the foster home.
  • Sometimes, one of the siblings will have complex needs, so they need a foster home that can provide specialist care.
  • There might be intense sibling rivalry, jealousy or bullying behaviour, so it’s best that the siblings are separated for the sake of their wellbeing.

Benefits of becoming foster carers for siblings

When you’re fostering siblings, it’s incredibly heartwarming to know you’re helping vulnerable children retain a small sense of normalcy in amongst the disruption they’ve experienced. While you might have two or three children to care for and more challenges to face, it’s a fun and highly rewarding role.

  • Siblings are more likely to settle into their foster home quicker than if they were separated.
  • They feel less anxious because they’re not spending time worrying about their sibling.
  • Siblings often feel more relaxed around each other, which means they might find it easier to open up to you and share their feelings.
  • Siblings absorb each other’s pain and emotions, so you’re not the only person they’ll vent to or seek comfort in.
  • You get to experience the joy of seeing siblings grow and blossom together.
  • You are helping vulnerable children heal from their pasts and make steps towards a brighter future.
thinking of fostering siblings

Fostering siblings UK requirements

If you’re thinking about becoming a foster parent and fostering siblings, you need to:

  • Be aged 21 or over
  • Have the legal right to live and work in the UK
  • Have the time, energy and patience to care for more than one child
  • Be able to meet the needs of each individual child
  • Have a spare bedroom for each child that they can call their own – although it’s possible in some cases for same-sex siblings to share a room, as long as the bedroom is spacious enough.

Apply to foster

Join our fostering team

We've been providing quality foster care to thousands of children for over 25 years. Each of our local offices are rated by Ofsted as 'Outstanding' or 'Good'.

Generous payments and rewards

Receive up to £23,118 per child, plus birthday and religious festival allowances, an exclusive refer-a-friend scheme, and more.

Ongoing training & development

As well as our hands-on induction course, Skills to Foster, you’ll receive ongoing training to help you become an extraordinary foster parent.

Around-the-clock support

You’ll be introduced to an entire network of support, including your own dedicated social worker and other foster parents. You'll also have access to a 24/7 helpline, so you're never alone.

Speak to our team

Whether you’re ready to start your journey or just want to chat to an expert, we're here to talk.

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