Our fostering team answer some frequently asked questions around fostering.
Do I have to have a spare bedroom?
Yes, all placed children must have their own bedroom, unless they are part of a sibling group and for children to share a bedroom, this needs to be risk assessed as being right for the children.
I am over 55 – am I too old?
You need to be over 21 years old to foster and there is no upper age limit. You will be required to undertake a medical assessment via your GP to ensure that you are physically and emotionally well enough to undertake the task of fostering.
Can I foster if I am single or in a same sex relationship?
Yes, we welcome single applicants and those in same-sex relationships. Your relationship status is no barrier to fostering. In all applications, the stability in your life and support networks will all be considered as part of your assessment to become a foster carer.
Does my religion stop me from being able to foster?
No, we welcome applicants from all religions and faiths and this is not a barrier for fostering.
How long does the process take to become a foster carer?
On average it takes 4 to 6 months to complete all the recruitment checks and assessment visits satisfactorily. However, this could be completed quicker depending on you and your assessor’s availability.
Would previous convictions prevent me from fostering?
A previous criminal conviction would not necessarily disqualify you from fostering, it would depend upon the nature of the conviction and when it occurred. An enhanced DBS check is required for all fostering applicants, so we would need you to discuss any convictions with us as soon as possible so that we could decide whether or how it might affect your application. This information would remain conﬁdential.
Do I receive any training once approved?
Yes, as part of your assessment prior to becoming approved as a foster carer you will need to undertake a three-day ‘Skills to Foster’ training course. In addition to this, we also offer a broad training programme which includes both face to face and online training which will be tailored to both your and the child’s needs. This will be reviewed as part of your personal development plan.
How long will a child be in placement?
It will all depend on the individual plan of the child placed in your care. Many children need a foster family until they reach 18 years old (this is termed a ‘long term’ placement). Some children have time-limited placements (termed ‘short term’ or ‘respite’), which can range from a few days up to a few years. As part of your assessment and matching with a child, this will be fully discussed with you and only placements that you feel comfortable with will be made with you.
You will be made aware of each child’s individual needs and duration of stay – all information available about the child and their needs will be shared with you prior to a placement being made.
Will I know who the child will be before they are placed?
Yes, prior to it being agreed that a child will be placed in your care, CFS Foster Care will share all information with you and discuss if the child is an appropriate match for you.
Although some children are required to be placed in an emergency, the ideal is that every child is placed following introductions and full discussions about their needs and how you would meet these, to ensure the greatest chance of a successful placement.
For more information email our fostering team.