Caring for local children

If you foster for Bradford, you will care for a local child or young person, so they can continue to live in Bradford district, close to their friends and school.

We are based in Bradford, whereas independent fostering agencies (IFAs) are regional or even national. Agency foster carers can have children placed with them from towns, cities and villages that are 45 miles away or even further.

Coming into care is very unsettling for a child. Having to move to an unfamiliar area can make this trauma worse, especially as it can involve a very long journey to and from school. They may not be able to see friends and family as easily, or continue with hobbies and clubs they may be involved in.

Foster for Bradford foster carers will have children from the Bradford district only placed with them, which generally leads to much more positive outcomes for the children.

Bradford district

“The best thing about fostering with Foster for Bradford is helping local children and giving back to your community.”

Catherine, foster carer

Policies that benefit the children

When you foster for Bradford, your social worker and the children’s social worker are working for the same organisation – Bradford Children & Families Trust, all following the same policies.

The policies are designed to work in the best interests of the children, to achieve the best outcomes for them.

This doesn’t always happen as easily with independent fostering agency staff, as they have to consider the business objectives of their agency too.

Shorter gaps between children’s placements

Bradford Children & Families Trust will nearly always try and match children with Foster for Bradford’s own carers first. This is because Foster for Bradford is part of Bradford Children & Families Trust and we have recruited, assessed and trained the foster carers, therefore know how well they will be able to meet the needs of children that need to be fostered.

Foster for Bradford foster carers will also be local, so are able to keep children close to their friends, family and school.

There are also serious financial implications to placing children with agency foster carers (see below).

Therefore, the trust only looks to place children with agency foster carers when there are no available in-house carers with space. This means that agency foster carers often wait for a long time to have children placed with them, which can be very disheartening when they just want to care for children.

Foster for Bradford places a wider range of children with their carers

Bradford Children & Families Trust is responsible for the care of children from newborn up to the age of 18, and aim to place all of them with Foster for Bradford carers.

New foster carers are often more likely to be able to meet the needs of younger children than older children, so it is usually older children who need to be placed with agency foster carers.

Save children’s services money – put children before profit

The majority of fostering agencies are businesses. They make hundreds of millions of pounds in profit every year. Some of this will be routed offshore so that tax isn’t paid on their income. This is money that could have been spent on early help and prevention, which stops children from coming into care in the first place.

The vast majority of fostering agencies are businesses which exist to provide a return to their owners/shareholders. Many of them have been bought and sold by different investors over time, and are burdened with heavy debts. This has led to concern around how viable they are, and there is a danger of them going bust, leading to disruption for children and carers.

Hear our foster carer stories

We’re so proud of our current fostering families and everything they do to support children and young people in the Bradford district.​

Below, our foster carers share their experiences of fostering with our team.