They need a chance to shine - foster a teenager

Contact us about becoming a foster carer

There are over 850 children in our care in West Sussex. 64% of them are aged 11-17.

Why foster a teenager?

Remember being a teenager? It’s a time of huge changes, learning new skills, forming opinions, making life decisions, navigating relationships plus a few ups and downs along the way. It's a daunting time but incredible time, taking those next steps towards independence and exciting opportunities.

Visit our fostering website (external link)

Now imagine life as a teenager if you've experienced a difficult childhood without the support you need. Just like younger children, teenagers need the safety and stability of a loving family, which many young people in need of foster care have not experienced. Teenagers need consistency, support, guidance and fun as they develop into young adults. With our help you could make a real difference in a young person’s life. Let’s work together and give our teenagers the chance to shine!

West Sussex foster carer Michelle, has been fostering teenagers for 26 years. Watch the video below to hear her heart-warming story. 

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"Once they feel safe and secure they slot into your routine. They just want someone that will vouch for them and care for them." Michelle, foster carer

As a foster carer with West Sussex County Council you can provide that stability and discover skills you didn’t know you had. Your role as a foster carer is to provide a comfortable and supportive home environment, to be there to guide, reassure and help them through the tough times as well as encourage them to achieve their goals.

Fostering can be challenging but so rewarding and develop into a fulfilling career that offers so much more than the typical 9-5.  And you’ll have fun seeing life through a young person’s eyes as they explore the world with energy and curiosity. 

Above all you’ll be there to listen and talk to them about their hopes and fears.

Our foster carers tell us that there’s no greater joy than seeing a teenager transform from being withdrawn and insecure to confident, calm and happy.

About you

We want to hear from anyone interested in becoming a foster carer for teenagers in West Sussex. If you feel you can offer a loving home and have the desire and dedication to help a young person realise their potential, then please get in touch. 

Great foster carers come from varied backgrounds.

  • You can be single or in a same sex relationship
  • There’s no age limit to being a foster carer
  • You don’t have to have your own children
  • You can be renting your home or be a home owner
  • You do need a spare room
  • You can have your own children living at home
  • You can have pets

You may have experience of parenting your own teenagers or supported teenagers as part of your job as a teacher or youth worker. Or you may have spent time with nieces, nephews or a godchild and feel you have the right qualities.

Already fostering? transfer to us 

If you're already fostering in West Sussex we would be delighted to speak to you about what we can offer and how you can support your local authority to meet the needs of our West Sussex young people. As a local authority foster carer you will always be our first choice when seeking a foster home for a young person in our care.

What we offer

As a foster carer with West Sussex County Council you will become part of a large network of foster carers and receive a wide range of benefits which include;

  • Being part of a fostering service that is underpinned by the innovative secure base model.
  • Support from highly skilled and experienced supervising social workers, with regular one-to-one supervision.
  • A comprehensive training package – including access to secure base training.
  • A competitive financial package – see our payments structure
Receive up to £515.06 per week (depending on the age of the child and your skill level)
  • We are not for profit so you can feel assured that all of the fostering allowance is going directly to the child and the fostering household.
  • Out of hours support - so you are never left alone to cope with challenging situations.
  • Membership of The Fostering Network.
  • Membership of our Foster Carers’ Association – which provides help and days out for West Sussex foster carers and their families.
  • A range of support groups which run regularly across the county.
  • A counselling service which is there if you need it.

Contact us

Whether you’ve just started thinking about fostering or you’re ready to start your fostering journey please get in touch with our friendly team and we’ll explain everything you need to know.

Find out more about fostering with West Sussex County Council.

Videos - what's it like to foster?

Watch our powerful video showing the positive impact fostering a young person can have on their life, and yours.

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Meet Serena, she has fostered with West Sussex County Council for six years and has experience of caring for teenagers.

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"Don’t be frightened by it, it’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done. It’s made my life right now." Serena, Foster Carer


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