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Welcome to Gateshead Council's fostering service

Foster with Gateshead

We are committed to giving every young person the life they deserve

A number of children across Gateshead are in need of a temporary or permanent home where they feel safe and cared for. Foster families help children in Gateshead live happy and fulfilled lives.

Some children will return to their families after days or weeks. Others live with foster carers for several years, or even until they are grown up and ready to live independently.

We are the most direct route to caring for looked after children in the borough of Gateshead. We provide a range of training and support to allow you to gain confidence and flourish in your fostering role.

We offer:

  • a service rated "Good" by Ofsted in 2019 for its assessment, preparation and support
  • a professional support network, underpinned by a dedicated community of foster carers
  • valuable training, with funding towards qualifications for some carers
  • a varied range of fostering types including short-term, long-term and respite care
  • graded child allowance payments and skills-based payments offering the chance for career progression
  • a vibrant programme of virtual and in-person events

The difference between fostering and adoption

When you foster a child, you are caring for them on behalf of the local authority and the birth parents. You have no legal rights or responsibilities in respect of the child. It is usually a temporary arrangement, although some fostering placements can be long-term. When you adopt a child you become their permanent legal parent. The child has the same legal status as any other family member, for the rest of their life. You can find out more about adoption at Adopt North East (opens new window).


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Our stories

Many people admire those who foster, and there is no doubt that our foster carers do an amazing job. Our foster carers aren't super human, they don't posses special powers. They're real, everyday people, like you.

Meet real foster carers

Types of fostering

Discover the many different types of fostering available. We can help you decide which suits you best.

Learn about your options
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You might wonder what kind of financial assistance is available as a foster carer. This section details what you can receive to support you and your foster child or children.

Understand financial support
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Could you foster?

There's no such thing as a typical foster carer. Like the children who need them, our carers come from all walks of life. We're seeking people who are patient, flexible, understanding, determined and keen to learn. Your individual qualities and what you can offer to a child or young person are what matter to us.

Find out what it takes
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Training and support

Many of our children in need of a family have experienced difficult early lives. This can affect their behaviour and development. We offer training and support opportunities that prepare you for any challenging times. You will have the skills required to succeed and grow in your role as well as help on hand from our team.

Learn about our care for you

Fostering information events

Join one of our information events to hear from our team and one of our foster carers what it is like fostering with Gateshead.

Upcoming information events
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Starting your story

You've already taken the first step towards becoming a foster carer. The following page shows what you can expect if you become a foster carer with Gateshead Council.

Understand the fostering journey

Our care leavers

Our young care leavers inspire us with their resilience, strength, and aspirations.

Read some of their stories
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Get in touch

Gateshead Council is part of a new collaborative partnership, Foster with North East, with the 11 other local authorities in the North East of England to collectively recruit much needed foster carers. Find out more and start your fostering journey.

Find out more