Why do kids live with foster carers (or out-of home carers)?
Just like there are rules about how we should drive on the road or not steal from other people, there are also rules about how kids should be treated. This is because all kids deserve to live in a home where they have enough food to eat, are warm and safe, and have adults around them that treat them respectfully and kindly.
Sometimes, when a kid's home or family is not like this, a staff member from a government department may step in to make sure that they ARE safe. If they need to, they may organise for them to go and live with a foster family for a while until things are sorted out at home. Children move into care for all sorts of different reasons. For example:
- they are living with a parent or parents who aren't able to keep their child safe and secure
- their parent is hurting their child in some way
- a parent may be sick or in jail or have some other problem that stops them focussing on their child's needs
Sometimes kids know that what is happening to them isn't OK and so they tell someone, like a teacher or a counsellor. Other times someone may notice that bad things are happening, for example a neighbour might hear what's going on or a teacher might notice bruises on a kid and ask what has happened. If an adult finds out that a child is unsafe, they have a responsibility to do something to help that child.