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There are 500 children and young people in care across Somerset.

We need foster carers and adopters for children of all ages, from 0 to 18.

We  need adopters for the many young children waiting to be adopted. These can include siblings groups of two or more and children with disabilities. These children are the hardest to find parents for and often stay in care for longer. We also need adopters for our new schemes: Fostering for Adoption and ‘Baby Comes First’ our Concurrent planning scheme. Both these schemes give you the opportunity to have a baby or very young child in your life with a possibility of adoption but not a certainty (more information on these schemes can be found on page 16-17).

We particularly need foster carers for long term placements – these foster carers will offer a home to a child or children who are unlikely to return to their birth parents, extended family or be adopted and need a permanent family to grow up in. We also need more foster carers for older children and teenagers and children with disabilities.

Why do children come into care?

Children come in to care for a variety of reasons, it could be because of an illness in the family, a family crisis or because they are at risk of abuse or neglect.

The aim is always to return the child to the birth family if it’s safe to do so, and this could take a matter of days, months or years. Those who cannot return home will be considered for adoption or long-term fostering.

Children coming into care may not have had the same chances as other children, largely due to neglect or abuse, and they may be behind their peers in terms of emotional, educational and social development. Some children will have specific learning and physical disabilities or health problems.

A foster carer and adopter should encourage the child to fulfil their potential and nurture them with love and patience.

We provide relevant training while you are completing your assessment and an on-going programme of training is available to help foster carers and adopters improve their skills and understanding.

On-going support is available to foster carers and adopters.

Profiles of children

See below profiles of some of the children in foster care or waiting for adoption here.

Please note: the names of the children have been changed to protect their identity and stock images have been used. Some of the children may have already been adopted or placed with permanent foster carers but these profiles should give you an idea of the kinds of children that need permanent families.