Stockport's Mockingbird project

We're excited to be part of Mockingbird, which is an innovative method of delivering foster care. It uses an extended family model, in the form of ‘constellations’ which consist of a ‘hub’ home and up to 10 ‘satellite’ homes. The specially recruited and trained hub home carers offer sleepovers, peer support, regular monthly support meetings and social activities.

We were part of the initial Mockingbird pilot which began in 2015. It has recently expanded to 5 constellations.

Mockingbird can bring significant benefits to foster carers and, ultimately, the children and young people they care for. Because of its structure, Mockingbird helps ease the sense of isolation foster carers can feel. It offers immediate practical support, similar to that a non-fostering family might receive from friends and relatives.

Mockingbird was featured on BBC Breakfast. You can find the video below.

This is what our young people say:

  • “My Mockingbird family is the next best thing to my real family.”
  • “I get to meet others in foster care, makes me feel normal. I’m not the only one.”
  • “When I was at home I would stay with my grandparents if things were bad at home. Having my hub carer is kind of the same and that makes me feel safe.”
  • “I used to go missing because I would say stupid stuff and then feel I couldn’t go back, having others to talk to has stopped that and if I need it I can ask to stay with my hub carers.”

Fostering - Mockingbird constellation image

Consistency and familiarity

Continuity of care is one of Mockingbird’s underpinning principles. Hub home carers ensure the routines of the children and young people are kept consistent, regardless of where they're staying.

Stability and support

This familiarity improves the quality of respite care for the child and also the support offered to the foster carers. So much so, that it can mean relationships being maintained which may otherwise have broken down.

Find out more

You can contact the Mockingbird Liaison Officer by:

You can find more information on the: