Looking after a child that's not your own

Sometimes young people under the age of 16 go to live in the care of an adult who’s not their parent or a close relative. That’s known as ‘private fostering’.

If a young person lives with you for more than 28 days, you need to let us know by calling 020 8303 7777. We’ll put you in touch with a social worker to see how we can help.

You don’t need to tell us if you’re the child’s:

  • parent
  • brother or sister
  • aunt or uncle
  • grandparent
  • step-parent
  • guardian or person with legal parental responsibility

But if you’re any other relative (even a cousin or great aunt), a friend of the family or someone who doesn’t know the family well but wants to help, give us a call.