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Who can be a caregiver?
Our caregivers come from all walks of life. You may be married or single, have a large family or no children of your own, be working full time or be a stay-at-home parent, own your home or be renting.
You will make a great caregiver if you:
- can commit wholeheartedly to caring for a child who really needs your help
- have a stable home life
- are willing to accept the child just as they are
- can be resilient and patient.
Many young people in our care have had difficult lives which can affect them in all sorts of ways, so it's important that you can accept their behaviour and persevere when the going gets tough. Our foster carers say that through the challenges, seeing their foster children grow and thrive, is their greatest reward and enriches their lives.
"I'm single so I didn't think I'd be able to do caregiving, but I was told that they are often looking for placements where it's more appropriate to give one-to-one care. I realised that even though I was on my own I could still do it." Liz, caregiver.
Family, whānau and foster carers
Whānau or kin carers are looking after children who are in their extended family, whānau or hapu. They could be aunties, uncles, or grandparents.
Foster or non-kin carers usually don't know the children beforehand, but welcome them in and offer them a home as if they were part of their family.
"When you are thinking of taking on your grandchildren you think about how it's going to affect you, but once you get the children they are such a blessing that you wouldn't be without them. I can't imagine my life without my grandson." Virginia, grandparent caring for her grandson.