Fosterline Helpline Contract Notice 2020 – 2022

Fosterline Helpline Contract Notice 2020 – 2022

We are proposing to contract for Fosterline, an independent advice, information and support service for current and prospective foster carers.

United Kingdom-London: Social work and related services

2019/S 214-525628

Contract notice


Legal Basis:

Directive 2014/24/EU

Section I: Contracting authority

I.1)Name and addresses

Official name: Department for Education
Postal address: Sanctuary Buildings, 20, Great Smith Street
Town: London
NUTS code: UK
Postal code: SW1P 3BT
Country: United Kingdom
I.2)Information about joint procurement


The procurement documents are available for unrestricted and full direct access, free of charge, at:
Additional information can be obtained from the abovementioned address
Tenders or requests to participate must be submitted electronically via:
Tenders or requests to participate must be submitted to the abovementioned address

I.4)Type of the contracting authority

Ministry or any other national or federal authority, including their regional or local subdivisions

I.5)Main activity

General public services

Section II: Object

II.1)Scope of the procurement


Fosterline Helpline Contract Notice

II.1.2)Main CPV code


II.1.3)Type of contract


II.1.4)Short description:

We are proposing to contract for Fosterline, an independent advice, information and support service for current and prospective foster carers.

We would expect the service to provide a national telephone helpline across England and a website with digital support services.

Around three quarters of looked after children are in foster care. Foster carers therefore play a crucial role in our care system, providing much needed support and security for often very vulnerable children and enabling their successful transition into independent adult life. Through delivery of Fosterline, the Department for Education is committed to supporting foster carers so the children in their care achieve the best possible outcomes, alongside ensuring we have sufficient foster carers with the right skills and capacity to meet children’s needs.

II.1.5)Estimated total value

II.1.6)Information about lots

This contract is divided into lots: no
II.2.2)Additional CPV code(s)

II.2.3)Place of performance

NUTS code: UK

II.2.4)Description of the procurement:

Fosterline is designed to offer an impartial source of up to date and accurate information and advice for prospective and existing foster carers on issues such as how to become a foster carer, allegations of abuse, benefits, training, breakdown of placements, matters relating to the legal position of carers and any other issues about fostering which enquirers raise. Fosterline has been funded by the Department for the last 13 years and is regarded as a valuable resource for foster carers to discuss issues of concern confidentially.

The objective of Fosterline is to:

— support the retention of foster carers by providing accurate, appropriate and sensitive information, advice and signposting on a wide range of issues of concern to foster parents, thus enabling them to meet the needs of the children and young people in their care,

— support the recruitment of foster carers by providing confidential, independent advice and information to prospective carers about how to become a foster carer, the issues involved, the training and support available to them before, during assessment and when fostering, and

— reach a wide range of people with the potential to foster, including currently under-represented groups to contribute to the Government’s objective of identifying a diverse pool of foster carers to address the gaps in foster carers for specific groups such as teenagers, sibling groups and looked-after children with complex needs.

The Department is seeking to award a 2 year contract to an organisation to provide this service through a national helpline across England and a website with digital support services. There will be a break clause after the first year.

There is currently an organisation delivering this service on behalf of the Department and they receive over 3 700 calls a year, with over 170 000 visits to their website.

II.2.5)Award criteria

Price is not the only award criterion and all criteria are stated only in the procurement documents
II.2.6)Estimated value

II.2.7)Duration of the contract, framework agreement or dynamic purchasing system

Start: 01/04/2020
End: 31/03/2022
This contract is subject to renewal: no

II.2.10)Information about variants

Variants will be accepted: no

II.2.11)Information about options

Options: no
II.2.12)Information about electronic catalogues

II.2.13)Information about European Union funds

The procurement is related to a project and/or programme financed by European Union funds: no
II.2.14)Additional information

Section III: Legal, economic, financial and technical information

III.1)Conditions for participation
III.1.1)Suitability to pursue the professional activity, including requirements relating to enrolment on professional or trade registers
III.1.2)Economic and financial standing
III.1.3)Technical and professional ability
III.1.5)Information about reserved contracts
III.2)Conditions related to the contract
III.2.1)Information about a particular profession
III.2.2)Contract performance conditions:
III.2.3)Information about staff responsible for the performance of the contract

Section IV: Procedure


IV.1.1)Type of procedure

Open procedure
IV.1.3)Information about a framework agreement or a dynamic purchasing system
IV.1.4)Information about reduction of the number of solutions or tenders during negotiation or dialogue
IV.1.6)Information about electronic auction

IV.1.8)Information about the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA)

The procurement is covered by the Government Procurement Agreement: yes
IV.2)Administrative information
IV.2.1)Previous publication concerning this procedure

IV.2.2)Time limit for receipt of tenders or requests to participate

Date: 13/12/2019
Local time: 12:00
IV.2.3)Estimated date of dispatch of invitations to tender or to participate to selected candidates

IV.2.4)Languages in which tenders or requests to participate may be submitted:

IV.2.6)Minimum time frame during which the tenderer must maintain the tender

IV.2.7)Conditions for opening of tenders

Date: 13/12/2019
Local time: 12:00

Section VI: Complementary information

VI.1)Information about recurrence

This is a recurrent procurement: no
VI.2)Information about electronic workflows
VI.3)Additional information:
VI.4)Procedures for review

VI.4.1)Review body

Official name: Department for Education
Town: London
Country: United Kingdom
VI.4.2)Body responsible for mediation procedures
VI.4.3)Review procedure
VI.4.4)Service from which information about the review procedure may be obtained

VI.5)Date of dispatch of this notice: