More children in NSW now have a chance for a stable home for life where they can thrive, under Government reform introduced in October 2017.
If a child or young person is found to be at risk, they are removed from danger and placed with a foster carer. The priority then is still to return the child or young person to their family of origin, provided it is safe to do so. This hasn’t changed.
What has changed is that if it’s not safe for a child or young person to return to their family of origin within 2 years, the focus will become to find the child or young person a stable and loving forever family.
Providing long-term care
Research has found that children do better when they have continuity and stability. There are several ways you can provide this.
Guardianship. The court grants you guardianship for a child or young person you already know (such as a family member or significant other). You will be responsible for making parental decisions relating to that child or young person without the assistance of a foster care agency.
Foster to adopt. An individual, couple, or family adopts a child or young person who is in their care. As the adoptive parents, you will have the legal rights and responsibility of that child or young person while supporting them to stay connected with their birth family.
Long-term care. A child or young person remains part of your family with ongoing support from Challenge Community Services.
Intensive Therapeutic Care (ITC) step-down care. You care for a child or young person when they are transitioning from an ITC service into a foster placement. ITC is a government-funded program that helps children and young people recover from trauma.
Stepping in for the short-term
If you feel you’re not able to provide permanent care, there are other ways you can make a difference to a child or young person’s life.
Respite care. You provide regular time-limited care to a child or young person, such as on weekends or during school holidays.
Crisis care. A child or young person is placed with you within hours of being referred to Challenge Community Services.
Short-term care and restoration. A child or young person is placed with you for a short period. This can be anywhere from several months to two years. The child or young person may be restored to their family, transitioned into guardianship care, adopted, or transitioned to a long-term foster care arrangement
Not sure what type of care to offer?