Becoming a respite carer

Many people who are considering becoming foster carers feel anxious about caring for a child full-time. Some experienced carers can't be available to care for a child full-time, maybe due to work or family commitments, but they would still like to offer help to a vulnerable child. Becoming a Parents for Children respite carer is an ideal answer.

Respite care could be:

  • Providing a weekend break for a child
  • Looking after child for a few hours in their own home
  • Offering a week or two-week holiday for a child
  • Caring for a child during the school holidays

Here is a picture of a mother with her daughter in her arms. Many of our respite carers look after children in their own homes, but we would also like to talk to experienced carers who can travel to the child's home to care for them for anything from a couple of hours to a week.

As for all Parents for Children's carers, we carry out a detailed assessment before adding a new respite carer to our list. We offer the same high level of training and support to all our carers – either respite or long-term.

The characteristics you need to become a respite carer are the same as to become a full-time foster carer and as with full-time foster care, there's no typical respite carer. As with our foster care service, we currently offer respite care within a 50-mile radius of London and in and around Northamptonshire, so you'll need to live in one of these areas.

There's lots of useful information about foster care on this website. We hope that, after reading it, you're interested in talking to us about becoming a Parents for Children respite carer. If so, you can register your interest online, email us at [email protected] or call 020 7520 2881/5 and ask for advice about becoming a respite carer.

Photo © www.johnbirdsall.co.uk