Children come into Care for a vast number of specific different reasons, but almost always the problems can be summed up as poor Care in their real home; abuse and neglect being the basis of the overwhelming majority of requests to courts to bring children into the proper Care which the system relies on; fostering.
We had a child come to us for another reason once, a shocking reason but not bereavement, I'm not opening his case here, not today, probably not ever. I mention it because it was unusual, so the point is we had to throw the guide book out of the window and worked with Blue Sky to provide some custom-built care.
If my understanding is correct the person who has asked is a brand new foster carer, about to get their first placement, and the child has lost a parent through bereavement.
The child's privacy is terribly important, so we have to think about how to help the placement without knowing any specifics which might identify the child, or allow the child to identify themselves should they become a reader or contributor to the blog; unlikely, one might say, but in fostering you have to take no chances. Since the carer who has made the request has attached their name I'm going to ask the carer to make do with general observations rather than anything tailor-made.
I suppose my first thought is that, as per usual, the carer will be told as much of the child's background as possible and in this case I assume this information would include the circumstances surrounding the bereavement including everything that's known about the child's relationship with the parent and the impact of the loss up until the present moment.
I'd suggest; use your social worker's expertise.
The specifics of each unique foster placement are what your social worker is for. We mustn't forget they are highly trained in (almost) every eventuality and their advice and support is based on the decades of research and proven practices which are being constantly refined and distilled into the years of training they've undergone; trust them. I get peeved when I hear one or two foster carers moan "They should come and do my job for a week", I always think to myself "They could; you should go and do their job for a week, you wouldn't know where to start".
I'd suggest; ask anyone you know who has first-hand or second-hand experience of a child losing a parent when they were young, or lost a partner when their children were young. It's thankfully rare (well it is here, in modern Britain), but it happens.
One of my placements was due to start at a new Primary school one Septemeber and on the last day of the holidays we'd gone to the park to play, the child and me. Most of the other children were in little groups or gangs. We were on our own. There was another child, same age as mine, the mum had spread a blanket under a tree and was sitting, the child seemed detached and looked a bit lonely. We set up about twenty yards from them and our ball kept going over their way. Eventually the child started knocking it back to us and after about ten minutes I included the child in our game.
But the child never rocked with it; moved slowly - almost painfully - never spoke, had a long face, sad eyes.
We started our picnic, they had one too, I got talking to the mum having sent the children to find dandelions to tell the time.
Turned out they'd both be starting the same new school on the same day. We swapped mobile numbers.
Her husband, the child's father had died of a heart attack aged 33.
My foster child told me later they weren't going to be friends because the other child didn't have much to offer. I used to watch the child get dropped off at school in the morning; always alone, and stayed alone, staring into puddles. I watched the mum waiting at 3.30 to collect, always alone.
I guess what little I know about the impact of losing a parent when young (and the above is my only recent second-hand experience) is that, in this case, it knocked the stuffing out of living for the child and the mum; and how could it not; the shock, the totality, the unfairness (all those other children with mummies and daddies, all those other mums with hubbies to share with).
I suppose one thought I could contribute is that the Carer of a child who has lost a parent must protect themselves against contracting the sadness and other negatives which might accompany the child into your home. Give them the best, but look after yourself and your own heart.
Sorry I can't be more help; I lost my dad but I was 45. My partner's dad was killed by persons unknown when he was 24. I've seen strong self-sufficent adults need a year to get over it. I know a man who never has, and never will get over it.
There are plenty of books about the grieving process but I doubt there's much on helping a foster child grieve.
I wish you and the child every success; good times to go with the inevitable bad, peace and lots and lots of love.