The number of children in foster homes reached 21,880 last year, 70% more than ten years ago.
The steep rise in the figures is mainly a result of the closure of care homes for youngsters because of budget cuts, sector organisation Pleegzorg Nederlands said.
A further reason for the rise is the change in attitude towards children. A foster family is now seen as the closest thing to a normal situation for a child and the new youth law provides for them to be placed in families rather than in larger groups such as care homes.
Most children in foster homes (36%) are between five and 11 years old, while 31% are between nought and four years. The Pleegzorg figures also show that 50% of children stay in foster care for longer than two years.
The rising demand for foster care means the organisation needs 3,500 extra foster parents to add to the present total of 16,300.
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