When you’re in care, the options for where you live are:

  • with a member of your wider family, like an aunt, uncle, grandparent or family friend
  • with foster carers in their family home
  • in a children’s home (usually for older children)
  • being adopted

Sometimes children in care live at home with their parents.

Living with a foster carer

Foster carers are ordinary people who like to take care of children and young people. They are from all walks of life and have lots of experience of different things. They’re trained to look after children. They have to be assessed, prove they’re suitable and be checked by a group called the Fostering Panel. They are reviewed every year.

A relative or family friend may have been assessed to be a foster carer so they can look after you.

Once approved, they have regular visits from a supervising social worker, who helps them – and you – to make sure you’re well cared for and to deal with any problems.

A foster family will make sure you:

  • are made to feel at home
  • have adults who listen to you and spend time with you
  • are healthy
  • are safe
  • have help at school
  • get help keeping in touch with the people you care about
  • get the chance to make new friends and enjoy hobbies and activities
  • have fun and are happy
  • have support growing up

Your foster carers will keep in close contact with your social worker and let them know how you’re getting on.

If you're in foster care and due to leave, you may have the option to stay with your foster carer. For more information view our staying put policy.

What can I do if I am not happy?

First of all, try to speak with your foster carers. If that doesn’t work and you’re still unhappy or upset, get in touch with your social worker or your foster carers’ supervising social worker and they’ll come to see you.

Living in a children's home

Warrington has six residential homes for children and young people.

The four main children’s homes can accommodate eight children. Of the remaining two, one is a short break home for children and young people with disabilities and the other is a short break unit for children on the edge of care. 

All of the homes are based within different areas of Warrington. The homes are subject to Regulation 44 visits and annual inspection by Ofsted. As of the 1 August 2019, one of our main children’s home was rated as Outstanding, one as Good and two as Requires Improvement by Ofsted.

Of the additional short breaks homes, one is rated as Good and the other as Outstanding. The mainstream homes are registered to care for children in the council's care aged 8-18 and each home accommodates two young people.

One of the workers at the home will be your personal key worker.

Your key worker will spend more time with you and get to know you so you’ll be able to tell them about personal things. As well as sorting out any problems and making sure you’re okay, they’ll help you understand the rules so you can get along with everyone.

Your key worker won’t be there all the time. They work shifts, so they will be there at different times on different days. But there will be always be someone around who can spend time with you and listen to what you have to say. 

Your key worker will also talk to your social worker about how things are going and help arrange for you to see family and friends. The team at the children’s home will make plans for you to get to school every day with the right uniform, kit and equipment. They will make sure that you get time and space for your homework and keep up with your interests, including clubs and teams. They will also make sure that you get regular check-ups at the doctor, dentist and optician so you stay healthy.

Being adopted

Adoption is a way of providing the security, permanency and love of a new family when it has not been possible for you to be raised by your birth parents or within your birth family. Adoption is a legal process which transfers parental responsibility from your birth parents to your adoptive parents.

Adoption means belonging to and growing up with a new family when you can’t live with your own. When they adopt you, your new family promise to love and look after you.