One of the questions we often get asked is about the fostering allowances provided to foster carers for the child or young person in their care. Here, we give some insight into the funds that OwnLife Fostering provides its foster carers.

Fostering allowances

Once you become a foster carer, you receive funds each week from OwnLife Fostering which are broken down into the following categories:

  1. Funds directly for the benefit of the young person:
    • An allowance which provides funds for:
      • Clothing
      • Personal Needs
      • Pocket money
      • Transport
      • Telephone
    • Savings allowance for:
      • Long term savings so that they have a good start in their independent life
      • Savings for the year for holidays and also birthdays and religious festivals
  2. A contribution to the foster carers household bills for food, gas electricity, water etc
  3. A fee for the foster carer

Holiday fund for bonding and inspiration

These allowances for children in foster care are vital to help inspire, to enable them to take control of their ‘Own Life’. They’ve already faced upheaval and disruption in their life, so having access to savings for activities such as holidays offer respite for the foster child. It also allows time for the child to bond with their foster parent over a shared experience, it gives them the opportunity to learn about new places and be able to take a moment to relax.

Recently one of our foster carers, who was approved in April 2017, went on a motor home holiday in Europe with the 16-year-old in her care. This experience brought the girl closer to her Polish heritage where she was able to enjoy the cuisine, speak the language with locals and take a very emotional trip to The Auschwitz Birkenau Memorial.

What to consider when taking a trip

If you are taking your foster child abroad, you do need to give plenty of notice as you will need to be in contact with your social worker about the holiday. Some points to consider include:

  • Necessary permissions required to take a child overseas
  • You may need to organise a passport
  • Check with your own foster care agency about the holiday allowance they provide – this may differ between agencies
  • You may require documentation to clarify that you are the foster carer and have permission to travel
  • What accommodation will you be staying in?

The Fostering Network has further advice on the questions you will need to ask yourself well in advance of going away.. It also offers special discounts for foster carers in its member area so worth checking out what’s on offer.

Finding out about allowances

This is just a brief overview of the allowances we provide our foster carers. If you are embarking on the journey to become a foster carer or would like to move agency then it’s always a good idea to chat about this with your potential agency.

Becoming a foster carer

We foster children from inner and outer London Boroughs like: CroydonSurrey and other places in South London; so we are always looking for new foster carers. If you think you have what it takes to be a foster carer or if you’re already a carer and would like to work with us, get in touch today on 020 8313 3304 or via our online contact form.