Location: N. Ireland
Author: The Fostering Network
All foster carers receive a weekly fostering allowance from their fostering service when they have a child in placement, which is designed to cover the cost of caring for a fostered child. This includes food, clothes, toiletries, travel and all other expenses incurred and varies depending on the age of the child. Some foster carers also get a fee for their time, skills and experience. This report focuses purely on the allowances given to the foster carer to cover the costs of looking after a fostered child.
The Department of Health in Northern Ireland publishes minimum allowances (NMAs) for foster carers, with the expectation that all Health and Social Care Trusts meet these amounts. See Table 1 for the figures for this financial year compared with last year as well as the English rate. Even though the minimum fostering allowance levels have increased from last year, this was below inflation.