Working with social workers

Foster carers always need to work in partnership with the child’s social worker and their own supervising social worker. The Fostering Network has resources, publications, and advice lines to help foster carers understand the roles and responsibilities of everyone involved in the ‘team around the child'.

Working with ‘the team around the child’

Foster carers are part of what’s often termed ‘the team around the child’ which is responsible for the wellbeing and development of a fostered child. This team includes the foster carer, their supervising social worker, the child’s birth family and the child’s social worker, as well as a number of other people, such as education and health professionals, depending on the child’s specific needs.

How we can help foster carers

Working with Social Workers: Signposts in Fostering

Working with Social Workers has been written specifically by The Fostering Network to help foster carers understand the role and responsibilities they and their social workers have. It covers the following areas:
  • How the roles of these social workers differ.
  • The roles of other social workers foster carers might meet.
  • How foster carers will work with them to deliver the best care for fostered children.
  • What foster carers should expect from meetings with social workers.
  • What to do if foster carers are unhappy about the decisions made for the support they receive.

You can purchase our Working with Social Workers publication online for just £2
(the Signpost is available for £4 to those who are not members of The Fostering Network).

Our helplines

Our member helplines provide confidential, independent and impartial advice for foster carers in the UK. 


Our online community

Our members also have exclusive access to our online community where you can log in to share your experience and get advice from other foster carers. The community is a safe and secure area to discuss topics including being a foster carer and looking after a child, as well as advice on finances.