First4Adoption is the national adoption information service for anyone interested in adopting a child in England. Callers to the service can speak to friendly trained advisors to get information about adopting a child - from their suitability to apply to become an adoptive parent to how to begin the adoption process. The service can also put callers in touch with adoption agencies in their area.

First4Adoption is run by the charities Coram Children's Legal Centre, Coram and Adoption UK. It is funded and supported by the Department for Education.

The First4Adoption information line on 0300 222 0022, is open from 10am-6pm, Monday-Friday or visit


Single Parents As Foster Carers

Single parents are some of the best foster carers around in our experience. Some single parents are in the position of not being able to go out to work full time because of their own child or children being at school, so they can commit themselves fully to the fostering role. Single parent families are a valued  resource for fostering agencies, as some children are only to be placed with only male or female foster carers.

Whilst almost anyone can apply to be a foster carer, people need to have or to be able to demonstrate potential parenting skills which are adaptable to the fostering role. Foster carers are optimistic, good listeners, flexible and with a good sense of humour, which also helps.

In our experience one of the most difficult issues for people has been discussing finance. Looking after children and receiving a fee is a difficult concept at first and many foster carers have told Simply Fostering that they found it embarrassing to talk about payments.

Times have changed and fostering is no longer seen as a voluntary service. In order to recruit and retain foster carers it is now accepted that foster carers need to be financially rewarded as are any other workers in social care. Local Authorities and Independent Fostering Agencies provide fees and allowances to enable foster carers to care for children and young people on a full-time basis. Fostering can work really well for single parents who have to stay at home to care for children, as they can earn up to £500 per week per child tax free, dependant on which private agency you work for.

Many people are choosing fostering as a career choice and committing to fostering on a full time basis. Generally, the more available you are the more placements you will be offered.

Anyone interested in fostering and becoming a foster carer should go to where all information, practical support and choice is just a registration form away.

Adoption UK

Adoption UK is the only national charity run by and for adoptive parents, with a membership of over 4,500 families. The charity’s aim is to provide and support a self-help network for adoptive parents to explore the unique social, emotional and developmental needs of adopted children, particularly where they have been adopted from the care system following abuse or neglect in their early lives. Through this network, Adoption UK also promotes effective learning practice, based on nearly 40 years’ experience of adoptive parenting, which is integrated with current theories of trauma, attachment and development.

Adoption UK’s services include:

  • National helpline (0844 848 7900)
  • Local support groups
  • Contact networks
  • Adoption Today and Children Who Wait magazines
  • Publications
  • Online Community
  • Training workshops and programmes.


2010 was our 30th year of supporting, advising and campaigning for better outcomes for children in care. We work with everyone involved with adoption and fostering across the UK. Our regional and country offices in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, provide services to meet the needs of some of the UK’s most vulnerable children and young people.

National Fostering Agency

This is the website for the National Fostering Agency; it covers all the information relating to fostering including directing you to your local fostering contact.

The Adolescent and Children's Trust (TACT)

TACT is the UK's largest fostering and adoption charity and voluntary agency. Working in nine offices across England, Wales and Scotland, we are dedicated to providing effective services and campaigning on behalf of children and young people in care and families.

Be My Parent

Be My Parent is a family-finding service in the UK.

Capstone Foster Care

Capstone Foster Care’s mission is to provide safe and nurturing foster homes to children and young people who for whatever reason come into the care of Local Authorities. Capstone Foster Care enables children and young people to rebuild their lives.


Support for Children and Parents Drugs and Alcohol Support for Parents with Disabled Children
Adoption and Fostering Bereavement Books for Parents

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