The National Foster Care Association (NFCA) is understood to have hired St Luke’s to create a &£2m advertising campaign to attract foster carers.
BMP DDB also pitched for the campaign, which will commence in June and run for six to nine months.
St Luke’s will work with the Department of Health (DoH), the NFCA and local authorities, which are concerned about the shortage of foster carers because of the growing number of women in the workforce.
The campaign will target families from ethnic minority communities in particular.
It is understood New PhD and MediaVest are vying for the media business. An NFCA spokeswoman declined to comment on the outcome of the two pitches.
She says the campaign has nothing to do with a recent investigation which uncovered widespread abuse in Welsh residential homes. The campaign is confined to England, and to community rather than residential care.
The NFCA is a membership-based voluntary organisation funded through the DoH and subscriptions.
The recruitment drive follows the launch of a new logo created by London agency Torch Design and Art Direction.