Foster Care Statistics | Can you help a foster child?
Foster care has come a long way over the past decade. However, there is still a long way to go in order to help the thousands of children still in need of a foster home. Here we take a look at just some recent foster care statistics. It’s often only after really getting to know the facts and figures that you can appreciate just how much work still needs to be done.
How many children are in foster care?
As of 31st March 2015, there were 69,540 children placed within the care of local authorities in England. This was an increase from the same time the previous year which saw 68,800 children in care. However, only 75% managed to find placement with a foster home.
Remember, these are just the figures for England. In Wales there were 5,617 children in the care of local authorities, with 76% living in a foster care placement. In Scotland meanwhile, there were 15,404 children in care, with 36% living in a foster care placement.
What has been most interesting about these figures provided by Coram BAAF, is that every year the number of vulnerable children entering the foster care system has increased. There are currently a record number of children needing foster homes, sparking a countrywide search for 9,000 new carers .
The NSPCC has published some pretty grim statistics regarding how life in care affects children. According to a 2014 report, children who are placed into care tend to perform worse in school. This doesn’t relate to foster homes specifically, it also relates to residential care homes and children still living with their parents but who are under review from a social worker.
It’s important to note here that not all foster agencies are the same. Some perform much better than others and this is highlighted in Ofsted reports. If you’re looking to foster, you should always look out for an agency that has received excellent ratings and which is 100% focused on improving the lives of the children in their care.
Overall there has been significant improvements made over the years within the foster care system. However, with a record number of children still needing a foster family, it’s vital that more carers come forward.