Could you foster?
We believe in changing lives together and every foster carer needs to share that ambition. We really want our foster carers to be energetic, enthusiastic and committed to young people.
We don’t mind if you haven’t fostered before, or even if you haven’t had children of your own. Although childcare experience can be helpful, it’s by no means essential to become a foster carer.
Our foster carers come from all walks of life and different ages. We have single carers, cohabiting couples, gay and lesbian carers, and we also have carers from over ten different ethnic backgrounds.
If you are unsure whether you are able to foster, take our fostering eligibility quiz. Alternatively, we’ve put together a quick guide to some of the qualities that will help you succeed as a foster carer.
- I’m over 21 years old*.
- I enjoy living or working with children and young people.
- I’m resilient and will see things through, even when the going gets tough.
- I can put a child’s needs before my own.
- I’m very honest with myself and others.
- I like working as part of a team.
- I’m in good emotional and physical health.
- I have an ability to stand back and reflect rather than always rush in.
- I have a good sense of humour.
- The thought of temper tantrums, swearing, mood swings, loud music, defiance, the joys of adolescence and a lot more doesn’t faze me.
*Although the minimum age to become a foster carer is 21, unless you have extensive childcare experience or have grown up in a fostering household, we are unlikely to accept applicants under the age of 25.
- I’m able to commit to fostering on a full time basis or I think I can foster and work (see the ‘fostering and work’ section below for further information).
- I have a spare bedroom which can be made pleasant for a child or young person.
- My home is clean and comfortable.
- I have access to transport.
- I have a good network of people around me to provide encouragement and support.
- If I have a partner or other people in my household, they are on board.
Fostering and work
You need to think about whether your circumstances are right to become a foster carer – or if you can adapt your circumstances. We need our foster carers to have the time and availability to commit to a child. Most fostered children will have missed out on parental time and will need you to be there for them. Many of our foster carers consider fostering to be their full time occupation. We do have some foster carers who work alongside fostering, but are in a position to put a young person in their care first and have an ability to attend various meetings and training.
We offer a very competitive fostering fee, so please feel free to discuss this with us as you may discover, like many of our carers, that you can commit to fostering full time.