“Foster Carers play a vital role in changing the lives of children and young people by providing support, guidance, and love. It’s a special job that needs someone with an extraordinary heart”.

What is Foster Care?

Foster Care is caring for someone else’s child and/or young person in your home when their birth family is unable to. Our Foster Care families aim to provide a safe, nurturing, and loving home environment.

A common misconception is that children/young people only enter care because they have been abused. Although that is one reason, there are more. Children/young people enter care for various reasons including parents become overwhelmed with their problems and cannot meet their needs, parents become unable to provide adequate care and supervision, parents are unable to provide a safe environment, depression, and other mental health conditions affecting their family, drug or alcohol abuse by their parents or caregiver,  family breakdown or conflict, or a death in the family.

Foster Carers understand and accept that a child and/or young person in their care have their own family and that they are not replacing that family.

What is the Permanency Support Program?

SCMSAC is the only Non-Government, Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (ACCHO) providing Permanency Support services in the Shoalhaven and Far South Coast regions. We are a fully accredited agency under the Children’s Guardian NSW Standards for Statutory Out-of-Home Care. We are also accredited under the Australian Quality Improvement Council’s Health and Community Services Standards.

We support Aboriginal Foster Care placements for children and young people aged 0-18 years. We have offices in Nowra, Batemans Bay, Goulburn, and Bega. From these offices, we support Foster Care placements in the Shoalhaven, and down to the Victorian border. Caseworkers, in partnership with our Foster Carer’s, provide support services to children who are unable to live safely with their birth families. We strive to place children and young people in a safe, well-functioning, stable foster home allowing them to develop to the best of their potential.

We work closely with birth parents and family members, and encourage participation in permanency decisions, with the goal of restoration. We also adhere to the Office of the Children’s Guardian strict guidelines. Foster Care families receive a Foster Carer’s allowance and help from our PSP team is always available for Carers and families.

What types of Foster Care are there?

Our Foster Carers provide different types of care including long-term, short-term, respite, and crisis care.

What are the benefits of being a Foster Carer?

We understand being a Foster Carer is both challenging and rewarding. Carers and their families can experience a number of positive benefits from choosing to become a Carer. If you choose to become a Foster Carer with our service, you won’t be alone. We provide training, resources, and specialist support when you need it. Our commitment to ensuring our Foster Carers receive every support necessary, includes:

  • Individual day-to-day and scheduled support
  • Ongoing education and training
  • Encouragement and assistance to create a
  • Foster Carers support group
  • Specific training where needed, such as trauma training
  • Financial assistance to meet children and young people’s needs
  • Access to resources and relevant support services

We see significant and life-long benefits for children, young people, and their families who we support through our Permanency Support Program. For many children and young people, the right care can help them move on in their lives, and develop into healthy adults.

If you feel that you would like to become a Foster Carer with us, please get in touch with our friendly team.

Foster Carers personal experiences
Words of encouragement

“As a member of our community, I was very motivated to care for kids as I saw firsthand that our kids needed their own kind to care, and they needed to remain in their communities. I feel this was so important to the kids and their families.”
Q) What do you think children/young people need from a Foster Carer?

Support – Let the child know they can talk to you. Be there for them. Listen a lot. Make them part of your mob so they feel they belong even if it is just for a little while.

Q) What do your own children think about being part of a foster family?

My children think it’s great. They can help out. They try to help as much as they can. When I became a Carer, the agency I was employed by gave me support and training. Anyone who does care for kids will get training on how to care for children who have special needs. I found the training helpful and it gives me more ideas on how to talk and support our kids when they come into care.

Q) What advice would you give to anyone who is thinking about becoming a Foster Carer?

Talk to your family about this because they always think differently, and try to have a supportive team. Sometimes it’s hard not to get connected to the children, and when they leave, it can be hard on us. But most of all, being a Carer, you get a lot of joy out of just knowing you helped out when they needed someone. I really enjoy being a Carer.