What is Sanctuary Care?
Sanctuary Care is the best available solution to short-term family problems. We match respite carers (short-term foster parents) with children who need short-term care while their parents deal with their personal issues that prevent them from providing a stable home for their kids in the immediate period.
How do we help?
Our goal is to keep families together in the long run. We offer free respite care (short-term fostering) so that the child’s family can rehabilitate and rebuild. The period of care can be as short as five hours to a maximum of three months. In addition to this, we provide the parents with a caseworker who will help them take the necessary steps needed to get back on their feet and to be reunited with their child as soon as possible. We will even provide ongoing support and assistance for a period of time after the child returns home.
Who do we help?
We help families that are going through a crisis. This can range from parents being sentenced to a short-term in jail, families who find themselves homeless, a parent grieving the loss of a spouse, a teenage parent needing support, or those feeling burnt out or suicidal.
We do not get involved in child protection cases as these will not be short-term cases.
The ages of the children in our care range from new-born to eight years of age. Although we would love to help as many children as we can, we simply do not have the resources. Therefore, each case referred to us has to meet certain conditions in order for us to help. Here is a list of prerequisites that signal to us that we at Sanctuary Care can help:
· Both the parents and extended family network are unable to care for the child for a short period of time.
· A long-term care plan for the child must be clearly identified and a clear timeframe for the placement must be stated.
· Intermittent foster placement must not run longer than a period of one year – though exceptions may be considered on a case-by-case basis.
· The family must be engaged with community support who can assist them long term if necessary.
· The parent must commit to having regular contact with the child and must work closely with Sanctuary Care Staff in order to ensure the child can return to their care in a planned and timely manner.
If you know of any families dealing with short-term difficulties that jeopardise their ability to adequately take care of their child, please refer their case to Sanctuary Care. Our aim is to offer free support to help families find their footing and to reunite separated loved ones as soon as possible.