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“Can I foster if… ?” These are just a few examples of the questions frequently asked by foster carers.
From making an enquiry to approval it should take approximately 9 months. The home study assessment normally takes around 3 to 6 months, so we suggest you don’t give up work during the process. We can be flexible around your working hours. For example, we can do home visits in the evenings.
We do require that there is one adult available full time if you intend to provide a full time placement for a teenager. However your employment and finances will be discussed with our Social Worker and we have a flexible policy. Because you will become self-employed, we cannot guarantee you an income. However, you receive a fee and allowances when a teenager or parent and baby is living with you and we will pay short term retainer fees between one teenager leaving and another one coming into your home. If you are hoping to provide short break placements, then you will not be required to give up work, as long as you can offer us a few days caring each month.
It depends whether or not your agency is prepared to share their original assessment with us and whether or not you have fostered teenagers previously. However, you will be required to undergo at least some elements of the assessment again.
When you become a foster carer, your home becomes your workplace and so we require that you have a smoke free home and car. We are prepared to consider smokers who are willing to only smoke outside. You will not be eligible for parent and baby placements if you do smoke. This includes the use of e-cigarettes.
It depends on the nature of the crime. We are very unlikely to approve someone with a record of violent or sexual offences. We take up a police reference on all applicants so it is helpful if you discuss any convictions that are going to be reported to us at an early stage.
We are looking for people who are reasonably fit and active and who can offer teenagers support for a number of years. All applicants undertake a full medical and we receive advice from our medical adviser. If you have a medical condition they will advises us whether this is likely to prevent you from fully carrying out the role of a foster carer. We accept applicants with medical conditions and this will be fully considered.
No we don’t. As described above, we are looking for people who are reasonably fit and active and who can offer young people support for a number of years. At the other end of the age scale, we are looking for applicants with sufficient life experience and maturity of judgement and the ability to provide authoritative care to a teenager.
Yes! We accept enquiries from a variety of people and consider single applicants.
We encourage prospective foster carers to include their whole family in the process, taking the views of their own children into account when applying. The children of foster carers make a huge contribution, being a major part of the support network around a fostered young person. When considering a good match, it is typical that any young person placed would be at least 2 years younger or older than other young people in the home.
As part of the Skills to Foster preparation training we will cover how your children can be active participants in fostering.
We know you will have many more questions so please just ask!