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It is established that with each placement disruption there is a financial and a psychological cost to the child and their carers. KEEP is an intervention designed to help foster and kinship carers feel confident and skilled in their parenting of children. This will help to maintain placement stability. The financial cost of a placement disruption ranges from £805 - £1,700 which increases as the Social Worker searches for each new placement. The recruitment and approval of each new foster carer unit costs around £2,200. It is vital that this part of the care giving system feels valued, skilled and supported thus limiting the likelihood of them leaving prematurely.
It is important to understand the costs and outcomes of your existing training programmes for foster and kinship carers when comparing them with KEEP. Only then can commissioners and budget holders make informed decisions about interventions based on finances and measureable outcomes.
The costs of KEEP have been estimated as follows:
- Approximately £13k set up depending on recruitment banding of team members – includes training, equipment and initial staff costs
- £2.5k -3K per foster/kinship carer for 4 month course plus follow up support group for 8 months
- Minimum 2 groups of 7-10 carers in first year – expect to invest around £50k
Once facilitators are certified costs reduce to £1.8k - £2k per carer