Children in Foster and Relative Care

Children with disability and developmental delays who are in care can have difficulty understanding the changes and events in their lives. The experience of abuse and trauma can add to developmental challenges and the ability to process and make sense of the world. This can result in difficult behaviours which can place great strain on the care placement, and caregivers often need extra support.
Foster and relative carers may benefit from:

  • Help to identify the child's needs underlying difficult behaviours 
  • Understanding more about the impact of disability and trauma on development
  • Support to build new relationships and positive connections with the child
  • Support to develop the child's coping skills 
  • Support to develop the child's skills to manage day-to day tasks and activities more effectively
  • Help with sleeping and eating issues 
  • Help with aggressive behaviours associated with the disability and delays
  • Assistance to further build on areas of development such as speech and language, motor skills, social skills and emotional coping skills. 

Child and Youth Services (CYS) has experienced therapists who can provide behaviour and developmental support, expert advice, specialist assessment and intervention to assist foster and relative carers in caring for their child with disability and developmental delays. 

CYS also has a specialist team called the Alternative Care Therapeutic Team (ACTT).
ACTT has highly trained staff with expertise in disability, developmental trauma and child development. ACTT provides assessment and intervention services to foster and relative care families of children with disability who are under Guardianship of the Minister. Through specialist in-home therapeutic support, foster and relative carers can gain a deeper understanding of their child's development and behaviours and how to best support the child in their care. The team works collaboratively with carers and the care system around the child to achieve the best outcomes for the child and care family.
Foster and relative carers can discuss access to the ACTT program and other CYS services by talking to their Families SA social worker or National Disability Insurance Agency planner.
For further information about all the services available through CYS, please call the CYS customer liaison officer on 1300 720 513.