How to foster children
Everyone who wants to become a foster carer has to undertake a fostering assessment. The assessment is about exploring your individual skills and experiences. The assessment also provides you with information about foster children and how becoming a foster carer will affect you, your family and your friends. The assessment takes 4 to 6 months.
If you have children, it is important that you talk with them at an early stage about being part of a fostering family.
Becoming a foster carer and fostering children holds many challenges for fostering families. It is a big step that everyone in the household should approve of and be fully involved in.
Love is not enough
Foster carers have to set clear boundaries,they have to be consistent, aware of children's feelings and be seen to be fair by foster children. Foster carers need to build trust and mutual respect whilst expecting that family rules will be tested.
Most often, foster children are placed on a short term basis so foster carers need to be able to let go and to support children they have fostered to move on. Fostering is 'parenting plus', and love is not enough.
Fostering can be hard work at times but the rewards far outweigh the difficulties.
There are both Local Authority and Independent Fostering Agencies and every Agency has vacancies for foster carers. Before enquiring or applying to become a foster carer, make sure that you choose the right agency for you and your family by using our free fostering agency matching service. Contact us today.
Why foster care in UK?
People become foster carers because they are committed to giving children a safe and secure home. Stella, a foster carer told us "fostering has given me the opportunity to give youngsters a chance at family life. My kids had left home, I had the space and because I had thought about fostering for a while I took the plunge. I look after teenagers now who I help to move on to independance. It's hard sometimes but I love it!"More information...
Fostering as a career
Fostering can be a career. Some Fostering Agencies are prepared to pay retainers between placements to experienced foster carers and there is a growing need for foster carers who are prepared to foster children and young people on a long term fostering basis, as well as permanently.More information...
Who can be a foster carer?
Foster carers come from all walks of life, different backgrounds, experiences, lifestyles, ages and occupations. To be a foster carer you will need to be flexible, understanding and want to learn new skills. A good sense of humour helps.More information...
In our experience, Local Authorities take six months and Independent Fostering Agencies take an average of four months to complete the foster carer assessment. However Local Authorities are catching up.More information...
Foster care course
As your application proceeds you will be invited to attend a fostercare training course, most Fostering Agencies use the Fostering Network course called "Skills to Foster".
Foster Care in the UK.More information...
The fostering social worker will visit you and your family at home. It is important that you discuss fostering with your children at an early stage and check out how they feel about being part of a fostering family.More information...