Private fostering is when a child under the age of 16 (under 18 if disabled) is cared for by someone who is not their parent or a close relative. This is a private arrangement made between a parent and a carer, for 28 days or more. Close relatives are defined as step-parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, uncles or aunts (whether of full blood, half blood or by marriage or affinity).
To ensure that these children are being well cared for, it is a legal requirement that parents and carers notify their local authority before entering into these arrangements. Notification also enables children’s services to offer help and support to not only the children, but also to carers and parents as well.
More information is available from Croydon Safeguarding Children Partnership.