IFCO is a global, not-for-profit networking organisation serving to promote and support family based foster care across the world. We are the only international network of our kind.
Our organisation comprises a multi-cultural arena of foster carers, former carers, social workers, parents whose children are in foster care, care leavers, academics and professionals, researchers, media and policy makers.
Through conferences, training events and other forms of written and online communications, we meet, share experience and support each other.
IFCO can rely on a pool of international experts and trainers for its project work. We have a strong youth component. Young people are involved in decision-making and have their own network worldwide.
IFCO has no staff – we have a worldwide network of volunteers and national member organisations & agencies supporting our development work worldwide.
Formed in 1981, we have spread our messaging across the four corners of the world. Our membership base currently covers 68 countries and comprises of a range of individuals and organisations involved in foster care.
IFCO bases its work on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that children have the right to grow up in a family environment.
Our members are united by the aim of helping to make the right of every child to live in a family a reality. We believe that whenever possible children should grow up with their own parents or extended family. When this is not possible, a substitute family-based solution should always prevail over other out-of-home forms of care for children. We believe that care should be child and family focused and that diversity should be respected and valued.
IFCO is not involved in international adoption or fostering. We believe the foster family should be as close to the family of origin as possible