Fostering young asylum seekers
“In exchange for me teaching him English, he taught me about his way of life. I’m not sure who was learning the most!” Rachel
Gloucestershire County Council is part of a national scheme that aims to provide a safe, supportive home environment to a young person under the age of 18 who is applying for asylum in the UK and has no relatives or guardians in the country.
Anyone who is interested in caring for a young asylum seeker would need to be fully assessed as a foster carer and would be expected to foster other children needing care, not solely young asylum seekers. There is no national or local scheme to ‘host’ young asylum seekers on a short-term basis.
About the young person
- Young people coming to the UK as asylum seekers may have experienced significant trauma, including living in a war zone, time spent in refugee camps and the death of family members and friends.
- They are most likely to be male and aged over 14.
- Based on current figures, they are most likely to come from Afghanistan, Sudan, Eritrea and Albania although we do also look after young people from other countries. Please note that the Syrian children you may have seen on television are usually settled along with their families and don’t require foster care.
You will need
- A spare room in your home with enough space for a bed, personal storage and a desk (or somewhere in your home where they can do homework)
- Experience of looking after children, either as a parent, a foster carer or in a professional capacity
- An open mind and a curiosity about other cultures
- A willingness to support young people to practice their religion, for example by supporting them to eat Halal food or helping them to attend a mosque
- A willingness to support them to learn English and to become settled in a local school
- To help them to create links within the community so that they don’t feel isolated, for example linking them to a local community group or helping them to engage in sports like boxing, cricket and football
- A willingness to support them with legal processes and dealings with the Home Office and solicitors
- To be prepared to offer emotional support to overcome the trauma they may have experienced in their home country and on the journey to get here
- A weekly maintenance allowance based on the age of the young person to cover all the costs of caring for them
- A weekly fee that recognises your time and skill as a foster carer
- Support from your own fostering social worker and from a team of family support workers
- Out of hours emergency support
- A support group of other foster carers in your area and mentoring from a foster carer looking after young asylum seekers
- An ongoing programme of training that is offered locally
Find out more
- Call 01242 532654 for an informal discussion
- Fill in an online enquiry form
- Send us an email (please include your telephone number)