TELL ME ABOUT TRANSFERRING TO ISLINGTON
There are many advantages to fostering with a local authority rather than an independent agency. All looked after children are in the care of a local authority. When you foster directly with Islington you will join a service rated by Ofsted as having Outstanding leadership, and rated by our carers as a ‘great place to foster’. Our staff and carers are trained together in Trauma informed practice, to help us work together well to meet the needs of children and foster carers.
Support is key when you foster with a local authority and Islington’s fostering team provides advice and support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Islington provides a comprehensive range of support services from our experienced fostering social workers and team psychologist. Also in the same building are our looked after children’s health team, our contact centre, our leaving care service and the children’s participation service. These services all work together closely to support foster placements.
Islington understands how important support is for both the carer and the young person and has an excellent virtual school and health programme for the looked after children. Both the young person’s and your own social worker practice in the same building with the support and specialist services available under one roof. Local safeguarding teams would have been working with the family already with information securely shared between teams resulting in quicker communications and faster results.
“Support? Lots! Most comes from my supervising social worker, Winston his manager John Crawford and the young person’s social worker but also other foster carers and organisations working with the young person such as Leaving Care Team, AMASS, CAMHS as well as the Teenage support group, the New foster carers support group… great support.”
-Sam, foster carer
Fostering with a local authority also means there would be no long school runs or traveling long distances to contact or placement meetings. The young people you care for will all be from Islington and the north London area. Islington is part of the Fostering North London Consortium a partnership of six local authorities and you may choose to attend training or foster a child from another consortium member.
If you are already looking after an Islington child through an independent agency Islington will match the fostering package you currently receive for looking after a young person including all the help and support you have in place as well as any financial payments. If the Islington rate is higher, we will pay you the Islington rate. Allowances of course are only part of the package and these are complimented by other benefits such as free Fostering Network membership (which includes independent advice, discounts and insurance cover assistance) retainers between placements and legal protection insurance. Foster carers living in Islington do not pay council tax.
“I had a very difficult teenager. He stepped in and helped me out, got me the support. If it wasn’t for that I probably would have been pulling my hair out, I would have said ‘right, I’m not fostering anymore’. It’s because of the help I got that made me continue. And I learnt a lot from that support.”
-Kate, foster carer (On manager support)
To transfer, you would have a fast track assessment that would focus on your experience since you were approved and the young people you have looked after in that time. It would also look at how your situation may have changed over that period since your approval including how your skills and experience would have developed.
Below is a sample of the extensive in-house training available over the next few months:
8th – Child Trafficking
11th – Working Together: from referral to child protection conference – Part one
15th – Parental Mental Health
15th – Working Together: core group to child protection planning – Part Two
21st – Introduction to Neglect
22nd – Child Protection
5th – Promoting Healthy Outcomes for Looked After Children
19th – Communicating with Teenagers
22nd – Helping Children Learn
23rd – Child Sexual Exploitation
23/24th – Safe Caring