How to become a foster parent
Becoming a foster parent usually takes between 3 and 6 months. The fostering assessment needs to be a comprehensive process, to ensure that all of our children are welcomed into safe, stable and caring homes, but we will be here to support you from start to finish and beyond.
* We offer free, online "Introduction to Fostering" events throughout the year which is a useful starting point for anyone interested in fostering. These hour long sessions cover all of the basics, to give you a good general overview of all that fostering involves. This includes the different types of fostering, the assessment process to become a foster parent and how we carefully match children with foster families. Our foster parents co-host each event in order to share their experiences with you and answer all of your questions. There is no obligation and never any pressure to proceed beyond this information gathering stage.
* If, after attending an Introduction to Fostering session you would like to know more, the next step would be attending a "Foundation Session". These half day sessions form the first part of your fostering training and should leave you with a good idea whether fostering is for you...or not!
* If after attending a Foundation Session, you have decided that you would like to become a foster parent and we agree that you would fit well within our team, we would invite you to complete and submit a formal application form. Once this is received by us, your assessment process officially begins!
* There are several steps in the assessment process, most of which we are legally obliged to undertake. These include;
-Local Authority and police checks,
-Personal and employment references,
-Declaration of reasonable health,
-Training; Skills to Foster, First Aid, Managing Challenging Behaviour and Safeguarding.
- Several visits from your allocated assessing social worker, to gather information from you and all in your household to support your application to foster.
* Once all of the required information had been gathered together to populate your "Form F" document, it would be shared with a panel of people with expertise in various areas such as health, education or having experience of being in care. You would be invited to meet with the panel so that they could ask you any questions which they had from reading your "Form F" information.
* Panel discuss your application and make a recommendation to either approve or deny your application to foster. It is important to note that we would never recommend any family to panel who we did not think would make a fantastic foster family. If, at any point throughout your assessment, we felt that anything would hinder your ability for approval, we would discuss this with you with honestly and openly at the time.
* As soon as approval has been gained, matching can begin!
Please complete the contact form below or visit the "Introduction to Fostering" tab on this website to take your first step on your fostering journey!