Your fostering journey starts when you call us or fill out our online form to find out more. Step by step, we’ll talk you through the whole process of becoming a foster carer, what’s involved and exactly what to expect.
The next steps are:
- Home visit. We’ll visit you at home to meet you and your family. If we both agree the time’s right for you to become a foster carer, we’ll ask you to fill in a checks booklet.
- Pre-approval training. It’s now time for you to attend our pre-approval training course. Our training will equip you with everything you need to become a great foster parent – and there’s not an exam in sight! It’s a great way to get to know other applicants. You’ll gain a better understanding of what being a foster carer involves, and have the chance to talk to foster carers and professionals in a relaxed environment.
- Complete your assessment. Your dedicated social worker will complete an assessment of you and your family. They’ll visit you at home between eight and 10 times to collect information about you, your family and your experiences. Your social worker will then prepare an in-depth report called a Skills Assessment.
- Fostering panel. Your social worker will give your Skills Assessment to a fostering panel. The fostering panel will read your Skills Assessment carefully and then invite you to meet them and talk about your application. They’ll make a recommendation to our Agency Decision Maker, about your suitability to foster a child. They will then make the final decision about whether now is the right time for you to become a foster carer.
- Your first placement. We will work with you to match you to a child, as well as providing you with ongoing support and training.
Throughout the process, we’ll always be available at the end of the phone if you’ve got any questions and our Fostering Ambassadors (who are also experienced foster carers) will be on hand to help you too!