Contact with birth parents

It's usually a good idea for children to remain in contact with people from their past. There are several ways that this can happen and your Parents for Children social worker will help to advise on the most appropriate method for each child and each different circumstance.

Letterbox contact

For letterbox contact, you'll be asked to write a letter once or twice each year to the child's birth family. This can be to one or both birth parents, and can also include siblings and grandparents. Your letters, maybe including photos of the child, will be sent via Parents for Children. Often, the birth parents will reply with their own news.

You and your Parents for Children social worker will work together to decide how much to involve your child in letterbox contact. Older children may want to write the letters to their birth families themselves. For very young children, you will need to read letters from their birth parents to them.

If letterbox contact is maintained, then Parents for Children will have an up-to-date address for the birth parents. This means that we can easily help a child who wants to make contact when they reach adulthood.

Face to face contact

Face to face contact is arranged if it is felt that it's in the best interests of the child. For older children, who may have played a large part in caring for younger siblings or a parent abusing drugs or alcohol, it's often very helpful to see that their family are managing OK without them.

Contact with other people

If the child has other siblings, it is important to try to maintain the contact between them, so face to face meetings with siblings are often arranged.

The child's previous foster carer was, in all likelihood, a very significant person in their life, and maintaining contact with them, at least for a while, is important for both child and carer.

 


 

From time to time, Parents for Children runs conferences specifically addressing the issue of contact with birth parents. If you would like more information about our next Contact Conference, please check out our conference calendar or contact [email protected].