Information for sibling carers

This section is for people who care for their siblings and provides information about supports.

Background

Sibling carers are kinship carers who are caring for their younger brothers and sisters. If you are a sibling carer in Scotland you are not alone as research shows that 8% of all children being raised in kinship care in Scotland were being brought up by older siblings (Wijedasa, 2017) 

The Law in Scotland has changed and Local Authorities have a duty to place siblings together with the same carer, where appropriate, and in keeping with The Promise Scotland’s vision. Wherever safe to do so, Scotland will make sure children stay with their families and families will be actively supported to stay together.

The Promise website

Caring for your sibling

If your sibling is at risk of being taken into care and you would want to be considered as a kinship carer or if you already care for your sibling and wish to care for a new sibling, it is important that you approach the Local Authority the child resides in to ask to be assessed as a kinship carer. 

If you have been assessed and this has been unsuccessful, then it is important that you are supported to understand the reasons for this and given the information and opportunity to respond or appeal the decision. You may also want to seek your own legal advice on the matter. 

If it is decided that your siblings will live elsewhere, The Local Authority has a duty to ensure that you maintain contact with your brothers and sisters, if this is assessed as suitable and in their best interests. 

Support

Taking on the role of a kinship carer can be a lot of responsibility and can mean a lot of sacrifices in your own personal life to care. The Kinship Care Advice Service for Scotland (KCASS) can help to get the support you need to ensure that you and your siblings can stay together and that you as a carer can also have a life of your own. 

KCASS can assist you with any kinship query. They have a dedicated helpline which is staffed with experienced advisors who will provide financial, practical and emotional support, as well as signpost you to services in your local area. 

KCASS also provide training for carers and family events as well as consult with kinship carers on proposed national policy changes. KCASS also provide training and support to the practitioners that support carers to ensure they too are supported. 

Siblings Rights

Information for siblings who need help and support about contact with their brothers and sisters.

KCASS contact information

Helpline:  0808 800 0006
(a message can be left out of hours)
open week days 10am-2.30pm

  www.facebook.com/kinshipcarecas/ 

  Twitter@kinshipscotland

  advice@kinshipscot.org

A Scotland wide partnership aimed at improving and changing legislation, policy and practice.

© 2021 Stand up for Siblings

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