There is currently a great need for foster carers as the number of children who need loving, welcoming and caring homes increases. The issue becomes more serious when you consider siblings in foster care.
Siblings in Foster
Many carers do not have enough space for more than one foster child, making finding families for siblings in foster care more challenging. There are also significant negative effects of separating siblings. Here are some reasons why siblings in foster care should not be separated and why more carers should open their homes to foster siblings.
For most people, the strongest relationships they have in their lives are with their siblings. These relationships also typically last longer than other relationships, including those between a child and their parent. Sibling relationships are a part of who we are and tie us to where we came from.
Sibling bonds are also important during the challenging developmental phase any child goes through in childhood and adolescence. A brother or sister can be crucial in helping a foster child deal with any challenges they encounter.
Understanding how important they are, foster care agencies do not break these relationships unless in specific circumstances where they are forced to. Foster care agencies like fosteringpeople.co.uk try to keep siblings together unless other issues such as a home not having enough room come up.
They can also arrange for foster children to live close to each other even when in separate homes and for their respective foster families to work together to ensure the best outcome for their foster children.
Siblings who stay together in foster care have better mental health than those who are separated. There are several reasons for this, including the act of separation and siblings losing people who have been there for them throughout their lives.
The second reason is the emotional challenges foster children can have when separated from their siblings. Foster children often use their siblings to get help coping with what has happened in their lives in the past. Losing someone who helps them do this can lead to anguish and stress that manifests as emotional and mental health challenges.
Additionally, siblings who are separated in foster care can have difficulty trusting adults or building relationships with other children.
Successful foster care is a result of stability and permanence. Foster children who feel safe and welcome in a home are likely to feel content, leading to a successful placement.
Additionally, various reports say that foster children and young adults who live with their sibling or sibling group in the same home are more likely to be successfully reunited with their parents.
Some foster children come to foster care with some trauma due to what they have been through. They have to deal with the complexities of their trauma, and this is often not possible if they are separated from their siblings. Such an act is likely to cause additional trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder.
This is not a great outcome for any foster children, especially since the point of foster care is to help them reunify with their families. These integrations become more complicated if a child suffers additional trauma and related disorders.
Foster children face significant challenges if they are separated from their siblings on top of everything else they deal with in their new situation.
There are numerous benefits of keeping them together, and fortunately, most foster care agencies try to achieve this unless something specific stops them from doing so.