Could you foster?
By becoming a foster carer, you could change the lives of young people who are often in need of a caring family at a critical point in their lives. Often, support and guidance at the right time will set a child on a positive path through their life and open them up to experiences they never would have had otherwise.
As a foster carer, you would care for the child to make sure their physical, emotional, educational and social needs are met. Alongside our social workers, you’d help the child keep in touch with their birth family and attend meetings to discuss the child’s welfare and future plans. You may also help to return a child to their birth family or to move him or her to adopters or long term foster carers.
Can I become a foster carer?
We welcome people from all walks of life, as long as you can provide a home for a child and meet their needs to help them develop and thrive.
- You must be at least 21 or over to foster
- You must have a spare bedroom
- It doesn’t matter whether you are male or female
- You can be married, single or living with a partner
- We welcome people regardless of their sexuality
- You will need to be fit and well to meet the needs of a child placed with you
- It doesn’t matter if you’re living with your own children, step-children or without children
- You can either live in your own house or be renting
- You can be in work, unemployed or retired
Becoming a foster carer will have an impact on your life, others around you and the child in your care. Although it is a big decision, it gives you the opportunity to make a positive difference to a child or young person in need of care which can also bring benefits to your own life as well.
It is important to be clear in your own mind why you want to foster before deciding to register your interest. As a foster carer, it is also vital to have a strong support network in place, and our Children’s Services team will provide you with 24-hour support.
These are some of the qualities we look for in our foster carers:
- Have a down-to-earth attitude, take things in your stride and find solutions to problems
- A good humour; children are fun and need you to help them learn to be a child
- Confidence; to be a good role model for children and be able to nurture confidence in others
- Patience; can build trusting relationships with children and a good listener who can respond appropriately will make a big difference
- Commitment; fostering needs a commitment to the children and to your own learning and development
- Good communication; be able to share information sensitively and keep in touch with others to make a difference to a child’s life
- Open-minded; things change and you need to be able to work with this
- Teamwork; to be a part of a team around the child