ECEC eds sought for internationally renowned specialised foster care program in SA

ECEC eds sought for internationally renowned specialised foster care program in SA

by Freya Lucas

July 09, 2021

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals are being sought to play their part in an internationally renowned specialised foster care program that is being piloted for the first time in South Australia.


The program, called Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO), is a partnership between the Department for Child Protection (DCP) and OzChild, and aims to place vulnerable and complex young people aged 12 to 17 years with a specially-trained foster carer who will provide full-time one-on-one support for about nine months.


TFCO carers ideally have experience working with young people with complex behaviours, with qualifications including nursing, childcare workers, teachers, social workers, paramedics and emergency services, a DCP spokesperson explained, outlining that the ultimate aim of the program is to see the child or young person to return to family or a stable, long-term foster carer, rather than residential care.


Carers who take part in this program must not be working in any other capacity and will be paid accordingly, presenting an opportunity for those who wish to take a divergent role which builds on their ECEC qualifications. 


The State Government has committed $3.8 million to trial the program over two years to support a total of 14 young people.


The TFCO model has operated internationally for more than 30 years and is used in Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales. OzChild will work directly with DCP to help identify young people who are suitable for the model.


Carers who take part in the program will be trained and have access to a 24/7 support line. Following recruitment and carer training, the first young people are due to be placed into the program in December.


To find out more about becoming a TFCO foster carer, visit