Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services

Intensive foster care

Intensive foster care is a program offering placements and intensive support for children and young people in out-of-home care who require therapeutic support for complex and extreme levels of needs.

Children are placed in the home of an approved foster or kinship carer (or provisionally approved carer), with intensive support provided to the placement by a non-government intensive foster care service.

Intensive foster care services are responsible for recruiting, training, assessing and supporting carers who have been approved by our department.

The core components of intensive foster care are:

  • a team-based approach to caring
  • a therapeutic focus
  • the conduct of intensive case management
  • the provision of advanced training for carers.

Further information about the intensive foster care program is available in the Intensive foster care: Program description (PDF, 249 KB)Intensive foster care: Program description (RTF, 669 KB).

The program description was developed following a review of the former specialist foster care program, which included extensive consultation with non-government stakeholders and within the department. The outcome of this consultation is available in the report Specialist foster care review: Consultation report (PDF, 617 KB)Specialist foster care review: Consultation report (RTF, 471 KB). It was also informed by a review of research and other forms of enhanced foster care in Australia, which is available in the Specialist foster care review: Enhanced foster care literature review and Australian programs description (PDF, 740 KB)Specialist foster care review: Enhanced foster care literature review and Australian programs description (RTF, 56.3 MB).