BECOMING A FOSTER CARER
Foster carers are as individual as the children they care for, so it’s important for us to know what skills you possess and where you need further training and development if you want to learn how to foster a child. As you would expect, we also make rigorous checks about prospective carers so that children and young people in care are safe from harm.
The first step to becoming a carer is to contact us for an informal chat. This is an opportunity for us to learn a little more about you, but more importantly for you to feel free to ask as many questions as you like. We will also provide more information about the formal assessment process and arrange a time to visit you and your family.
Contact us for a chat
The full application and assessment process will usually take between 3 – 6 months from the time that you apply. If you are applying with a partner, you will both be assessed – but even if you apply on your own, all members of your household will be involved in the process. It is important to always be as open and honest as possible. Be yourself, raise any concerns you may have and always ask if there is anything that you don’t understand or need more information about.
TYPES OF FOSTERING
- Short term – a temporary family while alternative arrangements are found;
- Emergency – short notice with limited information. Children in crisis may be placed out of hours;
- Long term/Permanent – a permanent family until the child comes of age and moves to independent living;
- Respite – a chance for foster carers or children to rest and refresh;
- Parent and child – often short term, a specialist type of fostering where a parent and child will be fostered together. Foster carers would need to help support the mother or father to learn how to parent their child – allowances are provided for both parent and their child;
- Children with disabilities – specialist training and additional allowances are provided;
- Remand – a child is remanded into foster care.
You can be approved for any or all types of fostering depending on your circumstances and experience.
So before you become a foster carer we will discuss what suits you best.
Application process More about our children
Next Step aims to provide a specific range of services to each and every child who is referred to us. Our matching process ensures that we consider all aspects of a child’s needs vigorously, so that we provide the right level of service.