Every Child Deserves a Home
What is the Fostering Scheme?
The Fostering Service of the Ministry of Social and Family Development administers the Fostering Scheme for children below the age of 18.
Fostering is when volunteer families provide food, shelter, clothing and love to children who are in need.The Fostering Scheme aims to provide an alternative care arrangement for these children so that they can benefit from a safe, stable and nurturing home environment as well as grow and fulfil their potential.
How is fostering different from adoption?
Fostering is different from adoption. A child on the Fostering Scheme keeps his / her own identity and continues to be a legal child of his / her natural parents. Adoption is, on the other hand, a legal process where an adopted child assumes the rights of a natural child of the family. The family would assume the same responsibilities as they would for their own children.
Not All Children are treated Equally
Why are children placed on the Fostering Scheme?
Children may be in foster care for the following reasons:
-Their parents are unable to care for them and there are no other care options.
-They have been ill-treated by their parents / family members
-They have been abandoned.
Every Child has the Right to be Loved
What kind of care do Foster Children need?
Foster care is child-centered and family-focused. Our foster children have needs like other children. They need shelter, food, love, education, security and an opportunity to play and interact with other children.
Foster parents must be committed to ensure that the children’s needs are met.
What Foster Parents Should know First
Can Foster parents choose the children they want to care for?
Foster parents can indicate the age and gender of children whom they feel they can best care for. Foster parents will be matched to a child according to the child’s needs and their ability to care for the child.
What kind of support is available to Foster parents?
Fostering Coordinators offer regular support, advice through home visits, telephone contact and training. These allow foster parents to exchange information and views on the child’s development, welfare and any other concerns that foster parents may have. The training will cover child developmental needs, child management issues, and issues relating to fostering children in need of care and protection.
Foster parents can call the Fostering Emergency Hotline for assistance after office hours. Foster parents will receive a monthly fostering allowance. The allowance is meant to meet the needs of the child such as:
Apply to be a Foster Family
Can you give a child a home? Be a foster family – provide food, shelter, clothing and love to children below the age of 18 under the Fostering Scheme.
Who can apply to be Foster parents?
-Must be a resident of Singapore.
-Preferably married. At least 25 years old.
-Must be medically fit to care for children.
-Attained secondary school education.
-Have experience caring for and living with children and / or strong parenting skills.
-Ensure that the children attend all necessary medical appointments, counseling and physiotherapy sessions, etc.
-Have a minimum monthly household income of $2,000.
-Willing to ensure a child-safe home environment.
-Prepared to protect and maintain the child’s privacy.
-Capacity to support the child’s relationship with his / her family.
-Where appropriate, support the child in returning to the family.
-Agree to participate in training organised by the Ministry.
-Willing to work with MSF officers and other designated agencies.
Other applicants would be considered on a case-by-case basis.
What is the assessment process?
The applicants and their household members will be assessed on their ability to meet the needs of the child. They will undergo medical and other screenings. Home visits will be conducted to assess the applicants’ home environment.
Once approved, the applicants will undergo a series of training to prepare them for the task of fostering.
Children who are registered with MSF’s Fostering Scheme are usually children whose parents / guardians are in ill-health and unable to look after them, or children who have been abandoned, neglected or ill-treated by their parents / guardians.
The Fostering Scheme serves as an alternative care arrangement for children in need of a conducive home environment. It is usually a short-term arrangement to meet the emergency care needs of a child.
In some cases, it may become a long-term care arrangement if the parents / guardians are unable to work out suitable care arrangements for their children.
Criteria to be foster parents
Foster parents must also not be recipients of the Public Assistance Scheme and the family must not be dependent on the fostering allowance as a main source of income.
Widows, single women and couples without children who are interested in becoming foster parents may also be considered on a case-by-case basis.
For more information about the Fostering Scheme, you can refer to the MSF website.
You can also call 63548799 to find out more about the Fostering Scheme.