To foster is to nurture something. A teacher could foster creativity by providing crayons to every student. You can also foster a child, which means the child lives in your home for a time.

You may have seen photos of a cat taking care of a baby rabbit, or a pig nursing a litter of puppies: those are little foster families. Foster can be a verb (to foster someone or something) or an adjective used to describe a foster family, child, or parent. The word is from the Old English fostrian meaning "to supply with food, nourish, support," which sounds like what those mama hogs were doing. Unlike adopt, foster has a time limit.

Definitions of foster

adj providing or receiving nurture or parental care though not related by blood or legal ties

foster parent”
foster child”
foster home”
of parents and children; related by adoption

v promote the growth of

Type of:
advance, boost, encourage, further, promote
contribute to the progress or growth of

v help develop, help grow

keep going, patronage, patronise, patronize, support
be a regular customer or client of
serve, serve well
promote, benefit, or be useful or beneficial to
Type of:
inspire with confidence; give hope or courage to

v bring up under fosterage; of children

Type of:
bring up, nurture, parent, raise, rear
bring up

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