common question

what is the difference between fostering and adoption?

what is the difference between fostering and adoption?

Foster care and adoption might be fundamentally different, but they share some common values. Kindness. Compassion. Stability. A safe harbour, when it’s needed most. 

the legal definition

The way fostering and adoption differ is even clearer when you look at the legal definition. With adoption, you become the legal parent of that child. You have full responsibility for them, they take your name, they are a legal part of your family.

With fostering, the child remains the legal responsibility of the Local Authority and you work together, sometimes with their biological family too. As a foster carer, you care for and parent that child on a short, medium or long term basis.

Read our blog “5 differences between fostering and adopting”

together we can make a difference

start your journey

find out more about fostering

find your local foster wales team

As the national network of Local Authority fostering services across Wales, we're by your side wherever you are. Enter your postcode to find your local foster care team.

Please enter a postcode Sorry, we were unable to find a local authority near that postcode.