foster Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “foster” in the English Dictionary

"foster" in British English

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fosterverb

uk   /ˈfɒs.tər/  us   /ˈfɑː.stɚ/
  • foster verb (TAKE CARE OF)

[I or T] to take ​care of a ​child, usually for a ​limitedtime, without being the child's ​legalparent: Would you ​consider fostering (a ​child)?
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fosteradjective [before noun]

uk   /ˈfɒs.tər/  us   /ˈfɑː.stɚ/
used to refer to someone or something ​connected with the ​care of ​children, usually for a ​limitedtime, by someone who is not the child's ​legalparent: a foster ​care/​home/​child/​mother The ​neglectedchild was ​removed from her ​home and ​placed with a foster family. As a ​child, he had ​lived with a ​series of foster parents.
(Definition of foster from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"foster" in American English

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fosterverb [T]

 us   /ˈfɔs·tər, ˈfɑs-/
  • foster verb [T] (TAKE CARE OF)

to take ​care of a ​child as if it were ​your own, usually for a ​limitedtime, without being the child’s ​legalparent
  • foster verb [T] (ENCOURAGE)

to ​encourage the ​development or ​growth of ​ideas or ​feelings: I ​try to foster an ​appreciation for ​classicalmusic in my ​students.

fosteradjective [not gradable]

 us   /ˈfɔs·tər, ˈfɑs-/
providing a ​home or ​care to a ​child when you are not ​theirlegalparent, or ​receiving such ​care, usually for a ​limitedtime: A ​socialserviceagencyplaced the ​child with a foster ​family.
(Definition of foster from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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