Home from home placements
Home from Home is a scheme in Swindon that supports families with children and young people of all ages with disabilities. Children and young people living at home with their families are able to spend time with their Home from Home Foster Carers. The arrangements are flexible and typically one weekend a month but may be more or may be less depending on the needs of the family.
If you think you can offer this support to a child and their family, please get in touch. We would be really pleased to talk to you.
The Home from Home scheme supports families of children with disabilities by linking them with foster carers who will look after their children in the foster carer's own home. This not only provides families with some respite, but also provides children with opportunities to extend their own ‘families’ and expand their experiences. The ages of the children and young people range from babies to eighteen years old.
Home from Home recognises that children with disabilities present unique and complex parenting skills, and as such believe it imperative that parents continue to be supported. Home from Home is one way of providing this support.
The Home from Home scheme (previously referred to as ‘Respite’) has been identified by families who use the scheme as a significant and valuable service in terms of support they receive.
This is because Home from Home provides families with regular and much needed short breaks, with the knowledge and peace of mind that their children are being cared for in a caring and safe environment.
It also provides their children with the opportunity to establish and develop meaningful friendships with people outside of their own families, as well as the opportunity to integrate into society in a way that may not have been possible before.
The scheme has also been instrumental in allowing children with disabilities to develop new skills, gain confidence, build friendships and enjoy experiences in a way that was not possible before. Home from Home Foster carers support children to gain independence as they grow into adulthood.
Home from Home foster carers are able to offer time to a child with a disability, usually a weekend a month, but the amount of time is flexible. We do ask that you are able to provide a child with a separate bedroom for overnight breaks.
As you are recognised as a professional foster carer, and will be trusted to care for children with disabilities in your home, we do request your permission to take out several checks with various statutory agencies. These include a DBS check. Please see ‘Becoming a carer’ below for more information.
Although you do not need to have experience with disabilities, we are very interested in individuals who do have this experience, for example working or volunteering in special needs school settings.
We hold regular information sessions where you can find out more about becoming a foster carer. We’ll briefly talk through what being a foster carer means, how the application works and the support you'll receive. You’ll also have the opportunity to ask any questions you have.
Carers need to be approved by our fostering panel and are reviewed anually. The assessment and approval process is co-ordinated by the Home from Home team and the whole process could take up to six months. This gives potential carers the opportunity to reflect on the role and discuss the situation fully with family, friends, members of education and children services and other Home from Home carers.
We assess applicants at each stage of the fostering journey in order to proceed to the next step.
We allocate applicants their own supervising social worker, whose job is to help guide and support future Home from Home foster carers throughout the application and assessment process.
Being a Home from Home carer isn’t something you are expected to do on your own. Carers have the support of their own supervising social worker, there are regular meetings with other carers, and ongoing training is provided through the children services department and the fostering team. There is also support for sons and daughters of fostering families.
More information: Support and supervision
Carers receive an allowance to cover costs are for the weekend you foster. There is a 24-hour rate which is based on skill level and the age band of the child.
The rates for 0 to 10-year-olds with carers at different skill levels are:
- Approved - £35.13
- Core - £39.55
- Qualified - £43.97
- Advanced - £55.03
The rates for 11 to 18-year-olds with carers at different skill levels are:
- Approved - £56.43
- Core - £60.87
- Qualified - £65.29
- Advanced - £76.34
Contact the team to tell us you're interested. It's just a chat to start with.