Fostering Friendly is The Fostering Network's programme to encourage employers to support fostering, and in particular, foster carers.
About Fostering Friendly
Our Fostering Friendly employers scheme offers businesses of any size a chance to make a difference for foster carers and the children they care for in their local communities and improve support for their own employees at the same time.
Nearly 40 per cent of foster carers combine fostering with other work. Those who do say that a supportive employer can make all the difference, enabling them to balance employment with looking after children. You can read more in our report Combining Fostering and Other Work.
The Fostering Network’s Fostering Friendly employers’ scheme helps employers to support and recognise the roles of their employees who foster and involves no direct costs. Members of the scheme agree to put in place a fostering friendly HR policy for all foster carers in their employment (regardless of their fostering service). This includes offering foster carers flexible working and paid time off for training and settling a new child into their home.
Fostering Friendly employers also help promote Foster Care Fortnight™, our annual campaign to raise the profile of fostering and encourage people to consider becoming foster carers and offer children the care they need.
'My manager is very understanding. If I need time off at short notice becase we have an emergency placement, or a medical appointment for one of the foster children; no problem.
'It works both ways though. I return to work inspired and motivated; even more determined to make a difference, because I've supported a young person through a difficult situation. Foster caring spurs you on in every aspect of your life.' - Foster carer of a Fostering Friendly employer
Support for employers
Our Fostering Friendly team give employers all the advice and support they need to join the scheme. The Fostering Network is a Fostering Friendly employer and we can share a template HR policy. Get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
Benefits for employers
- Once you are approved, you can display your Fostering Friendly logo with pride
- We publish a list of Fostering Friendly employers and will help promote and celebrate your new status
- Fostering Friendly employers can improve support for staff, making workplaces friendlier for foster carers, benefiting the children in their care and also making it easier for people to consider fostering
- You will share in the celebration of foster care and the vital role it has in transforming children’s lives.
Every year we present a Fostering Friendly employer with a prestigious Fostering Excellence Award. Some of our previous winners are listed below.
How you can get involved
If you are an employer who wants to become Fostering Friendly, or an employee who would like to encourage your employers, get in touch with our team today email@example.com.
Fostering Friendly employers
Achieving For Children
Bristol City Council (2018 Award winner)
Cheshire West and Chester Council
Coventry City Council
Department for Education
Flintshire County Council (2017 Award winner)
J G Fenn Ltd
Leicestershire County Council
Llandysul Royal Mail Sorting Office (2015 Award winner)
London Borough of Camden
London Borough of Redbridge
MTS Cleaning services (2015 Award winner)
Oxfordshire County Council
Plymouth City Council
Shop Direct (2015 Award winner)
Somerset County Council
Southwark Council (2019 Award winner)
Surrey County Council (2016 Award winner)
The Fostering Network
The Mortgage Brain