Supported lodgings is all about offering care and support to young people over the age of sixteen in need of a home environment. Carers provide these young people with an opportunity to learn the skills required to live independently – while also offering practical and emotional support.

Have you ever wondered about becoming a supported lodgings carer? If so, read on to find out more about supported lodgings and how Orchard Fostering can help.

What is supported lodgings?

Supported lodgings is a little different to traditional foster care and is sometimes less well understood as a result. Supported lodgings is essentially an accommodation scheme for young people over the age of sixteen who can no longer reside at home. The young people you encounter in supported lodgings come from a range of different backgrounds. Some can no longer live at home; some are unaccompanied minors displaced from their own countries due to war or violence.

Supported lodgings acts as a bridge to independence for these young people to develop their life skills while remaining in the secure environs of a family setting.

While foster care is centred around raising a child in a loving, caring environment, supported lodgings is more about preparing your foster child for the rigours of the modern world (while still providing a loving, caring environment).

What does a supported lodgings carer do?

Supported lodgings works in a similar fashion to regular foster care. You welcome a child into your home and give them a family setting in which to flourish. The biggest difference is the focus on investing your foster child with independence and guiding them through the more grown-up problems they may face.

A supported lodgings carer is responsible for helping instil a sense of practicality and independence in the young person in their care. Your responsibilities would include teaching your young person about:

  • Budgeting
  • Practical household tasks
  • Cooking
  • Self-care

You would work with them to develop these (and many other) skills throughout your time together. Whether it’s taking out the rubbish, learning to shave, or whipping up a masterpiece in the kitchen – you’re there to guide them. By helping them develop these everyday skills, you give them an invaluable education in the real world.

As well as honing your foster child’s everyday independence, supported lodgings carers help guide them through hardships they encounter. Being a teenager can be difficult – peer pressure, schoolwork, social media – and you can help guide them through a tumultuous period in their life. You’re beside them for the big ups and downs of young adult life – right where they need you to be.

Should I become a supported lodgings carer?

Provided you’re capable of providing a loving, caring environment for your child, fostering (and supported lodgings) is right for you.

Supported lodgings suits lots of people. It’s a great first step into the fostering world, as the young person in your care is slightly less dependent than a younger child. For this reason, single applicants find supported lodgings rewarding, too.

Supported lodgings also suits people who work full-time – provided you’re always available to your young person, you can hold down a job and be a supported lodgings carer at the same time.

How do you become a supported lodgings carer?

Applying to becoming a supported lodgings carer is simple. All you need to do is contact Orchard Fostering and let us know you’re interested in becoming a supported lodgings carer and one of our team will get in contact to discuss your suitability. If deemed suitable at this initial screening, we complete a detailed fostering assessment process of your suitability before approval. Once you are approved as a supported lodgings carer you’ll be on your way to experiencing the life-changing rewards of caring for a child. For help and support see the foster care allowance for 2024.