Caring for your Future
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  • Respite care provides a network of support to foster carers and families when they need it most.
  • It involves fostering a young person for a short period, often a weekend, but no longer than 28 days.
  • This allows the full-time care provider/s time to unwind, recuperate, and destress.

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Looking to become a foster carer?

What is respite foster care?

Respite foster care is a short term fostering placement that occurs for a few days or up to a maximum of 28 days. This arrangement often happens on a regular basis with the same respite carer supporting a family. The purpose of this type of fostering is to provide a valuable resource to support young people living at home with their families or with long-term foster carers.

A respite carer will care for a child for a set period of time on a recurring basis. For example, this could be for a week or two at a time or during school holidays or weekends. Whilst care is often provided to the same child at intervals, one-off support to other families is also sometimes necessary.

Respite periods are important as they give families a chance to have a break and a quick breather. This is especially important for families of children who have additional needs or challenging behaviour as it allows the family a short relief from the usual duties of care. It also means that the child can benefit from focused care from the respite carer as the respite family can become a regular part of their routine and something they look forward to!

Why is respite fostering important?

There are a number of different circumstances where this type of placement is necessary. For example, full-time foster parents may need a short holiday or have urgent family commitments to attend to which may mean they need to travel. In this situation, a respite carer can step in temporarily to provide a short term solution to the child’s care needs.

In other circumstances, a child or young person may have a disability or special educational needs that mean they require additional levels of support and attention. Other times, a child may have been through trauma which has resulted in difficult behaviour such as aggression or a lack of responsiveness. This presents a different type of challenge to carers but also requires high levels of patience, attention, and focused support. A short ‘respite’ is helpful for both the child and the family (be it foster parents or birth family), allowing both the carer and the children a chance to rest and relax. It is an opportunity for the full-time child care providers to recharge their batteries without causing too much disruption to the child’s routine and care plan.


What does respite care involve?

Respite carers work closely with the full-time carers who are responsible for the child. As the care placement often happens regularly, the carers must form a strong relationship to ensure that good communication is happening and everyone is on the same page. The needs of the child must always come first. It’s important that the child or young person understands the arrangement and is aware that the respite placement is a temporary arrangement.

The goal of all respite placements is to provide as little disruption to the child’s life as possible as stability is extremely important in allowing that child to recover from past negative life experiences.

Benefits of respite care

Respite care is an extremely valuable resource for the wellbeing of families. Some of the benefits of this type of placement include:

Support – provides vital support for family members or long term carers who may need time to recuperate.

Quality of life – the breathing space is essential in ensuring a high quality of life for both the young person and family.

Enrichment – respite carers enrich a child’s life and encourage them to grow, develop, and flourish. Each carer brings a different set of skills, interests, and personality traits that help in the child’s development.

Stability – a short-break from pressures and stresses can help to rejuvenate a person and mean that they can continue to provide love and support on a long term basis.

What makes a good respite carer?

Respite care is one of the most flexible types of foster care and, because of that, it is ideal for those who wish to foster on weekends, evenings, or other times that might fit around their employment. It’s a great way to ease into foster care and build up experience if you’re interested in becoming a long term carer or offering specialist care such as parent and child.

Qualities that make a good respite carer include:

  • Patience
  • Listening skills
  • Tolerance
  • Compassion
  • Empathy
  • Good communication
  • Energy
  • Sensitivity


How do I become a respite carer?

There is an ongoing need for more respite carers across England to support families who are in need. If you think you have the qualities to be a good carer and are interested in short-term fostering placements, we’d love to hear from you.

To become a carer, all you need to do is contact us to begin the process. Our fostering advisors will be able to provide preliminary information and let you know if you are eligible to foster. If so, we’ll move onto the following parts of the process including an initial home visit, the assessment process, training, and the fostering panel.

For more information on how to apply, give us a call on 03301 239 355, a member of our team will be happy to give you a more detailed introduction and answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, fill out our contact form and we will get back to you ASAP.

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Why Choose Fusion?

Competitive Payment Package

Competitive Payment Package

Generous fostering allowance and professional fee paid directly to carer. 

24/7 Support

24/7 Support

Access to a senior member of the team 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Effective Matching

Effective Matching

Thoughtful matching of children with your family to ensure positive outcomes.

Full Training Provided

Full Training Provided

No previous experience necessary as specialist training and development are provided.

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What our fantastic Fusion Fostering Carers think...

The journey to becoming a carer


Initial Enquiry

Call us, complete an online enquiry, use our live chat service or send an email to get in contact and begin your journey!

Home Visit

A social worker from Fusion will visit your home to get to know you and provide further information.


The assessment process will review your suitability to foster. Information is gathered into a Form F report.

Skills to Foster Training

You will receive specialist training on a 3 day 'skills to foster' training course.


Your assessment is presented to the Fostering Panel who will make a recommendation on your application.


Once approved, you are a registered foster carer and you will await your first foster child.

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How much do Foster Carer's get paid?

One Child

£400 / week

Fusion Fostering pay generous foster care allowances and offer amazing support and training to our carers.

As a Fusion carer, you will be paid an allowance of £400 per week for one child in your care. This increases if you look after more than one child.

The fostering allowance can sometimes be higher if the child has additional care needs and requires further support. 

Solo Placement

£500 / week

Fusion Fostering offer a generous fostering allowance and professional fee alongside 14 days paid annual leave and other benefits!

As a Fusion carer, who has a solo child placement (a child who cannot be placed with another young person) you will be paid £500 per week.

Parent and Child

£600-800 / week

Specialist training is required to undertake parent and child foster care. Fusion Fostering provide full training, support, and guidance to carers who wish to specialise in this area.

As a registered Fusion carer, you will be paid between £600-£800 a week to care for and provide professional support to a parent and their child.

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Fusion Fostering Limited, incorporated and registered in England and Wales with company number 07819299 whose registered office is at Old Mill, Maltravers House, Petters Way, Yeovil, Somerset, BA20 1SH.

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