What fostering disabled children is like, and what skills and qualities you'll need to be a good foster carer for them.
You don't need to have experience of caring for a disabled child to be a foster carer for them. However, you'll need to learn about their needs and do your best to meet them.
Disabled children in foster care
Around a quarter of children who need foster care are disabled. They have a range of disabilities, including:
- learning disabilities
- mental health conditions Go to https://www.gov.uk/when-mental-health-condition-becomes-disability (opens new window)
- physical disabilities
- sensory impairments
- complex health needs, which means they might need specialist equipment, monitoring, medication or feeding
If you choose to care for a disabled child, we'll work closely with you throughout your placements, and give you all the guidance you'll need to be a great foster carer for disabled children.
You'll be able to get regular training before caring for a disabled child, and while they're living with you.
If your home needs any adaptations and equipment, we'll make sure you get them.
If you'd like to care for disabled children, you can:
"Many people say they couldn't look after a disabled child, but…seeing a disabled child develop their independence skills, mobility and self-esteem is amazing."
Ali, foster carer of disabled children for 10 years
What skills you need to foster disabled children
To be a good carer for disabled children you'll need to:
- be very patient and understanding, as some children might need a lot of time and attention around things like homework, eating, or getting dressed
- have a good sense of humour
- be extra vigilant with safety
- be good at communicating in lots of different ways
- be willing to learn new skills, such as makaton sign language
- be willing to invest time to help them learn life skills, join sports clubs, or go to social events
- work well with a wide range of specialists, such as behavioural therapists, occupational therapists, or speech and language specialists
- go to medical appointments with the child or young person in your care