Become a foster carer

Foster mum and son smiling and hugging each other

  • When you first contact us, we will tell you more about fostering and find out a little about you.
  • We’ll then arrange to come and visit you at home.
  • After this meeting, we’ll write what’s called an Initial Enquiry Report which is shared with you. This report recommends whether or not a place will be offered to you on the preparation course.
  • Once you’ve attended the preparation group, you are given a social worker who will carry out an individual/family assessment – known as the home study – with you.
  • These assessments include visits to you and your referees as well as the required checks. We also give details of your abilities to meet the main skills required for fostering.
  • A report based on the information gained through the assessment and preparation process is compiled and signed by you and the assessing social worker.
  • Our Fostering Panel makes a recommendation on whether or not you should be approved and if so for what gender, age and number of children.  The recommendation is forwarded to the service manager who endorses the recommendation or refers it back for further information.

Contact us about fostering

Frequently asked questions

I’m on my own – can I still be a carer?
Yes. We’ll consider you as a carer, whether you’re single, married, divorced or living with a partner.

I’m in my 50s – is that too old to be a carer?
No. People of all ages make successful carers, as long as they are fit enough for the task.

Must I already be a parent?
No. We welcome applications from single people and couples who don’t have children, as well as those who do.

Do we need a big house?
No. It doesn’t matter if you live in a flat or a house, or if you rent or own your home. We do ask, however, that you have a spare bedroom so the child or young person can have privacy. If you rent, we also ask you consult your landlord about your plan to foster. 

Do we need to be well off?
No. Your ability to be a carer does not depend on the amount of money you have.

Will I get paid?
Yes. Carers get paid as self-employed people by the council. The amount you’re paid depends on the type of caring you do and in some cases it can amount to the same as a full-time job. You also get a maintenance allowance to cover the costs of caring for the child.

I don’t have a lot of time – can I still be a carer?
Yes. You don’t have to be available on a full-time basis to undertake respite care. Depending on your circumstances, you can work and foster. We would be happy to discuss this with you. 

What support will be available to me?
Each of our fostering families is appointed their own social worker. You will complete a comprehensive training package and there is the opportunity to join foster carer support groups. Events throughout the year also give you the chance to meet up with other foster care families and the fostering team.

What ages are the children who need care?
We urgently need carers for children from 0-18.