3. Types of Care

Last activity on June 24, 2024

3. Types of Care

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Family Based Foster Care:

  • Is provided by families who have opted to help children that they do not have a connection to.
  • These families are assessed, trained and supported by a non-government out of home care agency (such as ac.care).

Kinship Care:

  • Is provided by a person known to the child either related or close to the family.
  • Kinship carers are assessed and overseen by the Department for Child Protection.

Specific Child Only (SCO):

  • A SCO carer is defined as a person approved to provide care, in their own home, to a specific child or children with whom they have a connection (that does not fit the definition of kinship care) through their personal, professional or ethno-specific community life (which includes sharing a cultural, ethnic or religious community connection with the child), without, in some instances, directly knowing the child or the child’s family.*
  • The definition of a specific child only carer includes a person of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander cultural background that is not known to the child and is not considered kin by the family or those with cultural authority for the child.
  • Children are placed temporarily up to 3 months with a SCO applicant household, within this period a non-government out of home care agency is required to assess SCO carers and make a recommendation around whether the placement is suitable ongoing.

Residential Care:

  • Is care provided in a residential facility that holds up to four children at any one time.
  • These facilities are staffed by workers 24/7 with rostered shifts.

Commercial Care:

  • Is provided at a commercial facility such as hotel or private units and is staffed by workers 24/7 through rostered shift work.
  • This is a form of emergency care and is not a long-term option.


*Definition of Specifc Child Only (SCO) Carers has been taken directly from the Department for Child Protections Carer Assessment Report – Practice Guidance for Specific Child Only Applicants.

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