The Secure Base Model used in therapeutic fostering

The Secure Base Model

A secure base is at the heart of any successful fostering placement. It is provided through a relationship with one or more caregivers who offer a reliable base from which to explore and a safe haven for reassurance when there are difficulties. Thus a secure base promotes security, confidence, competence and resilience.

The Secure Base model has been developed through a range of research and practice dissemination projects led by Professor Gillian Schofield and Dr Mary Beek in the Centre for Research on Children and Families at the University of East Anglia, UK.

The model was recommended in the Government White Paper, Care Matters (2007) as a basis for training foster carers and was subsequently incorporated in the Skills to Foster preparation programme, produced by the Fostering Network (2009, 2014).countries as diverse as Norway, China, Thailand and Australia.

The Secure Base model is drawn from attachment theory, and adapted to include an additional element, that of family membership, for children who are separated from their birth families.


This model is at the core of our therapeutic approach




Recently, our Fostering Manager Greg de Smidt and Rowland Coombes one of our therapy team, met with Mary Beek and Gillian Schofield.   Greg and Rowland are part of a small group of professionals supporting the promotion and development of the Secure Base Model across the UK. This will also inform ongoing practice development within the agency.




If you would like to find out more about becoming a foster carer in a therapeutic fostering agency, please give us a call on 0800 121 6401, use the contact us form or find us on Facebook or Twitter.  We are based in Southend-on-Sea, Essex and have foster families in Essex and Suffolk.