How Independent Fostering Agencies and Local Authorities Differ

When a child is no longer able to be looked after by their birth family, they are placed into the care of the Local Authority, like us at Fostering Rotherham. Sometimes, the Local Authority does not have enough foster carers in their area and this is when the child may be placed with a foster carer from an Independent Fostering Agency (IFA), sometimes further away from home as independent agencies tend to cover a wider geographical area.


By fostering with us, our network of foster carers grows and you are helping us reinvest money and resources into helping more local children in care and continuously improving the community we love.



While the application process remains generally the same, the benefits and support offered by Independent Fostering Agencies and your Local Authority can differ.

Naturally, becoming a foster carer requires you to invest your time and emotion and having a great local support network can be one of your most useful tools. Fostering Rotherham provides local support. We have 3 Mockingbird Hubs providing peers support services that replicate traditional family support structures. We also have regular community events and celebrations that are free to attend for our foster carers as well as a local Fostering Association which provides peer support and friendly group activities. All training is also delivered locally.


Historically, IFA’s have not necessarily been subject to the same financial restraints as your Local Authority, they have been able to offer a more substantial financial benefits package. However in recent years, this is no longer the case. The financial support you receive is based on a number of factors, including the age of the child you are looking after and the level of training you have received. We offer competitive weekly allowances to all our foster carers on average of £482 per child. Whilst fostering is definitely a vocation and gives immense job satisfaction, it is important that you are recognised for your work.



If you’re already a carer and thinking about transferring, we recognise just what a big decision it is. We’re here for you at every stage, ensuring that everything goes smoothly for you, and ensures the best possible outcome for any children in your care. We follow The Fostering Network’s official Transfer of Foster Carers Protocol. Its primary goal is to ensure continuity for the child, and to make the transfer as fast as possible. Visit our Transfer to Us page for more details.


At Fostering Rotherham, we work hard to ensure that Rotherham’s children are placed with Rotherham families and that their lives are disrupted as little as possible. By fostering with us, our network of foster carers grows and you are helping us reinvest money and resources into helping more local children in care and continuously improving the community we love.



Learn more about fostering in Rotherham

If you have any questions about fostering in Rotherham, book a call back with a member of our experienced team at a time that suits you. All our call backs are confidential.