Fostering Services
Statement of Purpose 2022
Review Date: April 2023

 

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE FOSTERING

Contents

 

Company information

Organisational Structure

Legislative Framework and Standards of Care

Introduction

Statement of the overall aims and objectives

Statement of services provided

Recruitment and assessment of Foster Carers

Training and Development

Placement support, supervision and additional services

Ed Health Contact
Preparation for adulthood

Children’s Rights

Safe care and Safeguarding Complaints, Allegations and Outcomes Current Placements
Placement procedures

Matching Placements
Endings
Recruitment

This Service is Registered and inspected by Ofsted, Piccadilly Gate, Store Street, Manchester M1 2WD Tel: 0300 123 1231

 

Pilgrims Corner Fostering Service (hereafter called PCFS) provides important information about the registered company and is a requirement under the Fostering Services (England) Regulations (2011) and National Minimum Standards for Fostering (2011). It is for anyone who needs to know about our fostering service including:

Any person working for the purpose of PCFS

Any Foster Parents or prospective Foster Parents of PCFS

Any child placed with a Foster Carer by PCFS

Any parent of children or young people placed with PCFS

Any Local Authority and /or individuals expressing an interest in the services provided

The statement will be published on the company web site.

The statement of purpose links with our Children and Young People’s Guides.

The document will be reviewed and updated in the following circumstances:
At least annually
Any significant changes to the status and constitution of the organisation, or services offered.
Any changes to relevant legislation, regulations or guidance


Company Information

Status and Constitution
PCFS is a private limited company which provides accommodation to children and young people and has duties similar to those imposed on local authorities under Section 22 of the Children Act 1989, the Fostering Regulations 2011 and the Arrangement for placements of Children (General) Regulations 1991. We also operate within the framework of the National Minimum Standards for Fostering Services (England) 2011.

Organisation Details

Office Address:
185 SEA STREET
HERNE BAY KENT
CT6 8JY

OFFICE HOURS TEL : 01227 283696
OUT OF HOURS TEL: 07715298832

info@pcfs.co.uk
www.pilgrimscorner.co.uk


Organisational Structure

PCFS is part of the Pilgrims Corner Group which provides quality residential, fostering and education services for children and young people who are looked after. The agency is a small family run organisation, offering a friendly and personable environment to all its staff and young people.

PCFS was set up by mother and daughter, Lyn Norman and Sarah Norman, opening up the first residential unit in October 2005. The group has continued to expand with more residential units, a new school and the opening of the fostering service in July 2009.

PCFS is a small family run business based in the south eastern coastal town of Herne Bay in Kent.

The business began with Sarah and her children as a foster family who then progressed to opening and running her first children’s residential home in Herne Bay. Following a successful three-year period, the need for good quality foster care was identified. And PCFS began.
The addition of a fostering service enabled the residential children and young people to move on step down to family living, allowing for a smooth, planned transition with ongoing support from the residential staff. In addition, residential staff offer additional support to Foster Parents with very complex placements.


The fostering service is now available to all Children in Care, particularly those who have experienced multiple placements. Foster Parents have bespoke training and also have the opportunity to train alongside residential staff. They can also spend time in the homes to gain experience and understanding of children and young people who have experienced trauma.

PCFS also provide a wide range of services to complement the fostering service. These can be found later in this document.

 

Sarah Norman

Sarah has fostered  and so fully understands the role and demands that being a foster parent brings. “We aim to provide the best quality care to children and young people during a difficult time in their life by placing them with quality, highly skilled and trained foster families”.  Sarah both still plays an active role within PCFS, as the Responsible Individual working very closely with the fostering team and foster parents.

PCFS is always striving to improve and develop its service by working in conjunction with the National Minimum Standards, promoting positive outcomes for children and young people. PCFS recognises the individuality of children, the importance of children in care having as full an experience of family life as possible without unnecessary restrictions, and the centrality of foster parents as core members of the team around the child.

PCFS has an experienced team which support all the organisations foster parents.

In the last 6 months there has been a period of change and reviving of the ethos and cores values of the organisation. Foster Parents have identified wanting to be a part of smaller organisations that cherishes the feeling that foster parents are much more a part of the team working together. They appreciate the experience and support given by the fostering team.

Fostering Team

Lucy Castree

Lucy qualified with a BSc Social Work from Cardiff Metropolitan University in 2015. Following this she moved between Wales and England where she worked in a range of social work settings – Looked after children, Intake and assessment, statutory child protection, adult protection and out of hours (EDT) for children and adults. She has worked in both adults and children’s services since qualifying and has a wealth of experience conducting assessments from initial through to court directed assessments. She has extensive experience chairing complex strategy meetings and legal planning meetings and feels very confident in the safeguarding of both children and adults.

As the fostering manager she will ensure that the supervision social worker’s have the right support, tools, time, and flexibility to support the foster families. The supervising social workers get closest to the foster parents and their ability to lead, coach, teach, empathise, and empower the foster parents can seriously affect their success. Foster parents are professionals and are the experts of their situation and the child/children that are living with them. Consistency in this role is very important. Lucy aims to provide the leaders of the organisation with timely feedback about the service and outcomes for the children in order that everyone can work together to improve the service continuously and make and sustain valued relationships for the SSW and foster carers to be successful and valued. This will then enable them to facilitate a placement for a child where they can thrive.  Lucy is committed to working together as the organisation of Pilgrims Corner, to provide a high-quality service, that uphold its values of treating everyone as an individual and being fully inclusive.

Lucy is committed to ongoing professional development and wants to outwork the passion she has for young people to experience family life, without the risk of harm, and provide consistency in the support they have around them.

 

Sue Bartholomew

Sue is a dynamic, experienced, and creative Manager with 24 years’ experience working with children and young people.

 

Sue’s greatest strength is her organisational and time management skills yet remaining flexible and responsive to meet the everyday changes and challenges to support social workers and colleagues. Sue has developed quality assurance processes to ensure compliance with relevant legislation and promoting best practice and well organised and effective systems and procedures.

 

Starting in an educational setting in 1997, through until 2004, working directly with children and young people in a primary school as a qualified Learning Assistant and in an Ecumenical project in an area of high deprivation as a Youth Worker and set up a Parent and Toddler group supported by Health visitors and Midwives. From 2004 to 2009 Sue worked for Kent County Council as Social Work Assistant, Ready for Practice Student Social Worker (qualifying as a Social Worker in 2007).

 

Sue has 14 years qualified experience with the addition of Practice Education HE6 Health and Social Care CPD supporting student social workers; completed in March 2014.

 

From this background Sue has first-hand experience working with children and young people with complex and behavioural challenges and leading a team of staff to do the same. Sue has also worked in various roles, Senior practitioner, Team Manager across 3 offices, Service Manager for Multi-Disciplinary Assessment and Treatment Service (MATS), acting Registered Manager and involvement with an Independent Fostering Agency developing effective process for new applicants and existing foster parents in the role of Agency Decision Maker, Panel Advisor, completing Form F Assessments and Initial Visits with a robust approach to all aspects of these posts.

 

With experience and qualifications as a facilitator for the nationally accredited Fostering Changes and the Positive Management of Challenging Behaviour (again as an accredited trainer), Sue has also supported Child Protection Training and written and delivered training on Missing Person, Rough Housing and initiated, devised, and delivered a 2-day pre-approval training for foster parent applicants going forward from Skills to Foster.

 

With a new team at PCFS there is the feeling of being here at the start of a new beginning, writing policies and processes compliant with statutory requirements and all the functions undertaken in accordance with relevant legislation – so much research and learning as well pulling together previous learning and experience. This has been a stimulating and motivating experience and an exciting point in PCFS’s journey to provide amazing opportunities for children and young people working with an amazing team of colleagues and foster parents. 

Ian Woodnott

Ian joined the team in 2021. He is a qualified Social Worker having received a First-Class Degree with Honours at Canterbury Christ Church University in 2012. Since qualifying, Ian has worked in the East Kent 16 Plus Leaving Care Team, Adult Mental Health Teams and in Older People and Physical Disabilities Team. His role is to undertake the assessments of prospective foster carers and to supervise and support existing foster carers; to help them to develop professionally and to ensure the holistic care they provide to children and young people is of a high standard

 

Anne-Marie Payne

Anne-Marie has been a qualified Social Worker for nearly 15 years and worked in a variety of health sectors. 

 

Throughout the years, beginning in 1993, she undertook many caring roles beginning with a part time Physiotherapy assistant role and completed in-service Physiotherapy training at William Harvey Hospital, while also working at the Arundel Mental Health Unit (at the WHH) for over 6 years.  

 

During 2000 she attended and completed the Project 2000 Nursing Degree at Christchurch College, Canterbury, Kent.

2002 – 2005 Senior SW for Caldecott Foundation for over 3 years.

2005 – 2008 Havering College SW Degree.

2008 – July 2010 held the post of qualified Social Worker Kent County Council- Asylum Team Dover, Kent. 

2010 – 2012 I held the post of qualified Social Worker Kent County Council - Tunbridge Wells Child Protection Team. 

2013 – 2017 Supervising Social Worker at West Berkshire Council, Children and Families Team. 

2017 – 2020 Connected Carers Assessment Team at Hampshire County Council.

2020 – November 2021 Foster Care UK Fostering Agency.

2021 November – and currently at PCFS

Over time she has also acquired RSA stage 1&2 Typing, RSA stage 1&2 Word Processing, and a Psychology degree, and engaged in a large variety of training in support of SW CPD professional development. Anne-Marie is currently undertaking distance learning level 2 Understanding Autism training with TQUK.

 

Anne-Marie has a hands-on personality that’s outgoing, calm under pressure, with good communication skills at all levels. She has the ability to remain positive, build positive relationships with children and young people, parents, and Foster Carers. Also, having the ability to write comprehensive reports onto a database, enhances her work and practice.  Anne-Marie has a willingness to learn new approaches to practice etc.  She is flexible, organised, and has a creative attitude. She appreciates working within a team and can also work independently as the situation arises.  Her Hobbies & Interests include Interior Design, Cooking, Walking, Keep-fit, Reading, & Travelling with the family.

Megan Bartholomew:

Megan has been working with Pilgrims Corner since July 2020 and has previously worked for other IFA’s.

Megan enjoys working closely with the foster parents and dealing with any enquires they may have, as well as working alongside the foster parents with various projects. Megan feels this helps make Pilgrims Corner a comfortable and great place to work.

 

Megan has developed her skills over the last 3 years and has learnt a lot through various training courses, keeping herself up to date. One of her strengths is being able to help others when needed and always goes above and beyond her role.


PCFS also has a pool of therapists, mentors and contact supervisors who all work independently so we can contract their services as and when we need them. They are all subject to safeguarding checks.

 
Foster Carers

PCFS currently has 11 approved Foster Parents. PCFS foster parents are predominantly in Kent.

Legislative Framework and Standards of Care

Pilgrims Corner is managed in accordance with the principles outlined in the following:

The Children Act 1989

The Children Act 2004

The Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000

Human Rights Act 1998

Disability & Equality Act 2010

Care Standards Act 2000

Fostering Service Regulations 2011

National Minimum Standards for Fostering Services 2011

Care Planning, Placement and Case Review Regulations 2010

Care Planning, Placement and Case Review & Fostering Services (Miscellaneous Amendments) (England) Regulations 2013

The Care Planning and Fostering (Miscellaneous Amendments) (England) Regulations 2015

The Training, Support and Development Standards for Foster Care (2007)
UK National Standards for Foster Care (1999)


Statement of Overall Aims and Objectives

The primary aim of PCFS is to provide stability and continuity for children and young people. By considering the needs of each individual prior to being placed and throughout their stay with one of PCFS families. To ensure that children and young people experience minimal disruption and enhanced stability.

PCFS aim to ensure the voices of children and young people are heard enabling them to make choices and contribute to their care plan. In addition, PCFS consults with young people and encourage them to comment and make observations about the care they receive. This feedback allows PCFS to create a high-quality, needs lead service. PCFS involve children young people from the start of their placement by creating safer care plans and risk assessments together, progressing through various consultations to pathway plans and preparation for independence and into adulthood.

PCFS aims to provide the highest quality care ensuring the needs of all of our children and young people are fully met. To achieve this, PCFS only recruits Foster Parents with caring qualities, resilience and a high level of motivation. In addition, PCFS provide our Foster Parents with a tailored and progressive training programme to enhance their skills.

In all cases PCFS provides a high level of support and supervision developing foster parents practice and realise their potential.


Statement of services provided

PCFS understands that children and young people present with different needs and complex care requirements. To enable access to the most appropriate provision PCFS offers the following services:

Placements types – Emergency, short term, long term and respite
Placements for sibling groups

Day Care
Parent and Child/Children Placements

Parenting skills sessions

Therapeutic support e.g. Psychotherapy and Counselling

 PCFS promotes:

Safety and Stability

Education

Positive outcomes

Personal development

Recruitment and Assessment of Foster Parents

The process -

Stage 1 Registering Interest (Enquiry)

After talking with one of the PCFS team we take some brief information and if appropriate will arrange a home visit. PCFS send an information pack for which will be posted or emailed within one working day. This pack contains information about fostering in general.

The Initial Visit

All prospective foster parents are visited during the initial stages, and their suitability and motivation to foster is assessed.

These visits are a two-way discussion and are conducted by a qualified Social Worker or Manager experienced and skilled in the recruitment of foster parents.

During the visit we provide details about the process, we are transparent about the level of information that is required before anyone can be approved as a foster parent

From the outset potential foster parents are actively involved in the process to assist them in deciding if fostering is right for them. PCFS are always open about our expectations and how we will support people in achieving these.


Application

Following the initial visit, and if appropriate, the potential foster parent/foster family will be asked to complete and submit an Application Form. This also has the request for permission to undertake all the checks that are required in Stage One of the application process. For example, references (some referees will be visited) Enhanced Police Checks (known as a DBS - from the Disclosure and Barring Service), Medical Reports, Local Authority Checks, current employer references and other references will also be discussed with you and requested as part of your application.

This with involve all members of the household aged over 16years.
We also send a copy of the Statement of Purpose enabling you to find out more about PCFS as an organisation.

 

Preparation Training known as Skills to Foster

Prospective Foster Parents attend an initial 2-day (1 day if transferring or have previous first-hand fostering experience) training event based on the Fostering Network material 'Skills to Foster'. This is very much a two-way assessment process to determine if fostering is the right career choice for you and your family.

Prospective Foster Parents are provided with supporting material during this training that allows for comments and reflection to be documented, this will assist with the assessment process.

Following ‘Skills to Foster’ attendance, PCFS will inform the prospective Foster Parents if PCFS will be progressing their application to Stage 2 or advising why this may not be the case.

Stage 2 - Assessment

Following the successful attendance at the preparation training PCFS will assign a qualified Social Worker to undertake a comprehensive assessment with the applicant/s and their family. The information gathered will be used to complete the British Association of Adoption & Fostering (BAAF) Form F assessment report.

This assessment requires the Social Worker to have direct contact with all the family over a period of approximately 6-8 weeks.

The assessment report will cover; individual profiles of the applicants; existing and any previous relationships, children and adults living in the household, any adults living independently, any children living outside of the family home. The report will also include a description of your family life and consider valuing diversity, parenting capacity and skills. Alongside the prospective foster parent/s ability to demonstrate how they have or would manage key areas of the fostering role. You do not need to have your own children to become a foster parent.

Applicants have access to all of the information gathered except for references and sign the assessment report once it is completed.

Panel

PCFS Fostering Panel is made up from a variety of people with diverse experience in the childcare field. Voting Members include representatives from Health, Education, Police, and a Foster Carer from an alternative agency. In addition, there are Non-Voting members, a Panel Advisor, a Panel Administrator, and a Panel Medical Advisor. The voting members of the Panel are independent of the agency and ensure a positive and robust component to the process.

In addition to making Panel making recommendations on approval, has a quality assurance function and provides an annual report and regular feedback on the development of the organisation and the quality of its Form F assessments.

Applicants and the Social Worker who undertook the assessment, attend the Panel and could will be asked questions regarding their application, the assessment and to provide more detailed information or clarification if necessary.

 Approval

The Panel make a recommendation regarding approval which is then passed to the Agency Decision Maker (ADM) with whom the final approval decision rests. The ADM is a qualified Senior Social Worker and independent of the agency. All applicants will be informed verbally at Panel of the recommendation and the final decision confirmed within 10 days.

Training and Development

PCFS considers all staff and Foster Parents training as a significant part of the fostering task and use only experienced and highly qualified trainers.

Each year a comprehensive training package is developed to ensure that training is tailored to the needs of Foster Parents to support children and young people in their care and the programme supports continuing and ongoing personal development.

All new applicants attend the pre-approval training course, based on “Skills to Foster” which is endorsed by the Fostering Network. Following approval their Supervising Social Worker will complete a Personal Development Plan to help ensure they have the relevant skills and knowledge to support them in their fostering role. Foster parents will be supported to complete the Training, Support and Development Standards (TSD) within their first year of approval. PCFS also encourage experienced Foster Parents to become involved in presenting training courses and workshops alongside staff.

In line with the Fostering Regulation 2011 and Minimum Standards 2011 there is an expectation that all Foster Parents attend training regularly and complete all mandatory training within times scales. PCFS requires all primary care will undertake the mandatory training within the first twelve months of their approval, the secondary carer or working partner will complete these courses within twenty-four months of approval.

Primary Foster Parents are required to complete a minimum of six courses per year, secondary foster parents who are working three courses per year.

PCFS provide training using different opportunities and options to support accessibility for all foster parents and their support network.

 

PCFS maintain a training and development portfolio in order to record how foster parents are developing their practice and the skills required to further enhance their practice.

 

Pre-Approval Training – 2-day course

Skills to Foster

Core Training To be completed within 1st Year
TSD Standards

Recording & Reporting 1 day
Safeguarding including internet safety 1 day
Safer Care 1 day

Advanced Training and Specialist Training

Managing allegations 1 day

Promoting Health 1 day

Promoting Education 1 day

Attachment 1 day

Promoting contact 1 day

Equality & Diversity 1 day

Promoting Independence 1 day

ADHD & Behaviour Management 1 day

Asperger’s & Autism 1 day

Working with traumatised children 1 day

Working with children who bully or are victims 1 day

Drug and alcohol dependency 1 day

Lying & Stealing 1 day

Extremism & Radicalisation 1 day

Child Sexual Exploitation 1 day

Working with children who self-harm 1 day

Children who display sexualized behaviour 1 day

Life Story Work 1-3 days

Helping children with anger 1 day

Supporting children who have delayed development 1 day

The impact of secondary trauma 1 day

Working with parent and child placements 1 day

Working with unaccompanied minors 1 day

These lists are not exhaustive.

Placement support, Supervision & Additional Services

PCFS Foster Parents can access 24-hour support 7 days a week, 365 days per year from a qualified and experienced Supervising Social Workers.
Weekdays there is always an office-based Social Worker available.

Foster Parents receive support and supervision from their named Supervising Social Worker. This is in the form of regular weekly phone contact and email/text messaging. Home visits for supervision and support takes place every month as a minimum, additional visits are needs led. For newly approved foster parents PCFS provides weekly visits for the first 4 weeks of their first placement, followed by fortnightly visits for the next 2 months.

A minimum of 2 unannounced visits are undertaken each year. Peer mentoring support is also available for new and existing carers.

Foster Parents provide daily (or weekly in agreement with LASW and PCFS) logs which are signed and emailed to your PCFS social worker. These are read by your Supervising Social Worker and signed and added to the child/young person’s file.

Support groups for all PCFS foster parents are held every month face to face and via Zoom for conversation and discussions covering a wide range of themes.

If appropriate and within specified packages children and young people placed with PCFS can be considered for registration at the company’s school and also access therapeutic support and intervention.

Education

Wherever possible children placed with PCFS will attend mainstream education. Pilgrims Corner Group have a school for children and young people who may struggle with the size and expectations of a mainstream environment.

All Foster Parents are expected to promote all forms of education, attending parents evening, concerts, open days etc. Foster Parents are expected to make sure that children and young people have uniform and equipment in line with the children/young person’s schools requests.  Foster Parents will ensure there is a quiet space for a young person to undertake homework and that they have the necessary equipment to complete this task. Foster Parents are expected to assist with homework and projects.

Foster Parents and PCFS will maintain records of educational attainment, rewards and attendance to ensure children and young people are achieving their potential and addition to adding to Life Story work.

Health

PCFS views the health needs of children and young people in a holistic sense; from physical needs through to emotional, cultural, mental and sexual health and well-being. Supervising Social Workers ensure these are monitored and assessed through daily (or weekly) logs, regular supervision, visits to the home and liaison with appropriate health professionals.

Reports detailing this work and identified issues are provided monthly for placing Social Workers and at the young person’s Child in Care Review. Health matters are also monitored by the Fostering Manager and reported quarterly in the Agency’s Regulation 35 report for PCFS Directors and for Ofsted.

All health needs of all children and young people are address by ensuring they remain registered with their own GP and dental services, opticians etc where possible. All health assessments, checks and immunisations are carried out in line with legislation (Children Act 1989) and recorded in Child/Young Person’s health book (H&M – Health & Medication).

PCFS consider that promoting and providing education on health and related issues, e.g. smoking, substance misuse, diet, exercise will not only improve the health of child and young people using our service but will also enhance their self-esteem. Children, Young People and Foster Parents are encouraged to develop a deeper knowledge of health issues through training days, workshops and information sharing.

PCFS work with a mentor and a range of therapists as well as the local CAMHS teams to support mental health well-being.

Contact

Every child has the right to have contact with his/her family and friends’, providing this does not affect his/her safety and wellbeing. PCFS seek to ensure contact arrangements, where appropriate, are accurately and clearly detailed in the placement plan. Necessary risk assessments will be undertaken in conjunction with the Local Authority.

Foster Parents are supported and receive training to enable them to support and promote contact for all children and young people. PCFS also have a NACC accredited contact centre and a pool of trained supervisors.

Preparation for Adulthood

PCFS fully recognise the need to adequately prepare young people in our care for adulthood and independence. Within the care planning process, PCFS use a range of activities and target setting including a life skills folder dependent on the young person’s ability and learning style. These are provided to every young person over the age of 14 years to filter into their pathway planning. It is set out in small manageable steps enabling the young Person, Foster Parent and the Supervising Social Worker to evidence any gaps in the young person’s independent living skills before they are required to live away from the foster home.

  

Children's Rights

PCFS fully embraces and upholds the rights of children and young people and endeavours to ensure that every child and young person is heard, listened to and valued, protected from harm and provided with a safe family environment.

Every child and young person will be encouraged and supported to develop their full potential, be involved in decision making about their lives providing access to an Independent Mentor Advocate and have access to high quality education as well as access to their family, their friends and anyone else significant in their life.

Every child and young person will be cared for by adults who offer respect, concern, affection and experience appropriate to meet their individual needs.

No child or young person will be discriminated against and each will be supported to receive healthcare to fully meet their needs.

Every child and young person will be given opportunities to develop skills and interests, will be prepared for life as an adult and will be advised how to complain if they are unhappy or if things go wrong.

More details regarding children’s rights are found in the PCFS Children and Young Person’s Guides.

Safer Care and Safeguarding

PCFS protect all children and young people living with PCFS family by ensuring all Foster Parents and their household members over the age of 16 undergo rigorous checks not only pre-approval but continuously throughout their time as a family that fosters.

PCFS ensure every fostering family has their own family safe caring policy and a procedure specific to the child or young person placed with them. The young person is part of this process and in the preparation of a risk assessment. These documents are reviewed and amended as a minimum annually or when there are changes within the family or the young person’s circumstances.

Health and safety checks are completed annually and reviewed during unannounced visits of which there are at least two per year.

PCFS have a wide range of detailed policies and procedures supported by training to ensure all appropriate safeguards are observed. These include:

Safeguarding

Behaviour management

Bullying

Absent without permission

Alcohol and drug misuse/ County lines

Internet safety and CEOP

Sexual exploitation and illegal trafficking

 

Complaints, Allegations and Outcomes

Comprehensive policies and procedures are in place and provided to all staff, Foster Parents and Local Authorities.

The Registered Manager is responsible for ensuring all complaints are recorded in writing along with any action taken and the outcome of any investigation.

Placement Procedures

Referrals for placements are accepted from all Local Authorities by PCFS

When a referral is received from a Local Authority PCFS request an extensive range of information:

  1. The purpose of the placement
  2. Family and Placement history
  3. The child’s identity/race/culture
  4. The Care Plan
  5. Time scales
  6. The child’s wishes and feelings
  7. Risk Assessments

In the case of an emergency placement where it is not possible for the referring Local Authority to provide all of the above information at the time of referral they will be asked to provide as much information as is available. If this placement goes ahead, they will be expected to provide any outstanding information within 5 days.

PCFS knows it is particularly important for the organisation and the Foster Parents to have all of the information about the child or young person and their family to ensure the safe care of every household member and the child or young person.

 Matching

Referrals will be considered by the Fostering Manager in conjunction with the Supervising Social Worker. Stage one of matching includes:

  • Foster parents with the correct approval status; age range, gender, short term, long term etc.
  • Those within the location required
  • Consideration of school and transportation
  • Contact regularity and transportation

The second stage of the matching process will consider the child/young person’s needs and the proposed foster carer’s ability to meet those needs in relation to the following;

  1. Identity/race/culture
  2. History
  3. Behaviour
  4. Emotional
  5. Health
  6. Contact
  7. Child/Young person’s wishes and feelings

Consultation will take place with the proposed Foster Parents. If they are willing to proceed and consent has been received from the Local Authority Social Worker of any other CiC living in the home, the Fostering Manager will contact the placing authority. Appropriate paperwork and information will be sent and exchanged.

Placement Process

Following a decision for a placement to go ahead a preplacement planning meeting should be held to establish a clear Placement Plan and agreement. This involves sharing all of the information available and agreeing the content of the Placement Plan/Agreement. Delegated Authority should be set out and medical consent from the placing authority or a parent with parental responsibility given to the Foster Parents.

Education provision, health needs and regularity of visits by the Placing Authority’s Social Worker should be clearly documented along with arrangements for contact.

Where it is not possible to hold a pre-placement meeting; for example, if the child or young person is placed in an emergency, a planning meeting must be held within five days of the placement being made.

Ending Placements

Placements will not be ended by the agency for reasons other than:

The end of the placement is within the child’s Care and Placement Plan or Pathway Plan.

To protect the child or young person.

To protect members of the household.

In an emergency where other or more suitable arrangements to maintain the placement cannot be made.

If the Placing Authority is proposing to end the placement for reasons other than those stated above, PCFS will inform the child/young person’s Independent Reviewing Officer.

Whenever a placement move is being considered the wishes and feelings of the child/young person will be sought. Where their wishes and feelings are not being observed the reasons for this must be explained to them. The Placing Authority should not move a placement until the child/young person has had an opportunity to express their view.

If a move to another foster parent within the organisation is being considered, this will be treated as a new placement move with the same level of matching required.

Where young people are reaching their 18th birthday consideration will be given to continuing the placement if it is in their best interest.

Foster Parents are encouraged wherever possible to maintain contact with children and young people who have moved on.


Recruitment of Staff

  • PCFS implement a robust Safeguarding Policy and procedures regarding recruitment through:
  • Application forms and interviews
  • Disclosure and Barring Service Enhanced Checks
  • Reference checks from previous employers
  • Right to work and Identity checks
  • Social Work England registration for Social Workers

 

This document has been read and approved by the Responsible Individual.

 Sign: Sarah Norman

Print: Sarah Norman

Date: 31.03.2022