Becoming a foster carer
We urgently need more foster carers for children of all ages. If you’ve considered fostering but don’t think you’re eligible, it’s time to think again.
It’s not about what you are; it’s who you are that matters.
Who can foster
You can apply to foster whatever your background, all applications are equally considered. So, whether you’re old or young, married or single, male or female, gay or straight, renting or a homeowner – you can foster
Fostering is a big decision, so we completely understand that you may have quite a few questions. We have tackled some of the general myths about fostering, but if you would rather have a chat, please feel free to give us a call on 0151 666 4510.
There are many myths surrounding who can foster.
Types of fostering
There are many different types of fostering that foster carers can choose to specialise in, each with their own challenges and rewards. It is important to explore which type of fostering will be most suited to you and your family.
This type of placement is temporary. It can mean providing care while the permanent plan is being decided. It may be that children go home to parents or to another family member or may need to be placed with long term permanent carers.
This care is a long-term commitment to a child or siblings, right through to adulthood. The children become very much part of the foster family, although will have contact with their family of origin.
Short Breaks for Children with Disabilities
Children with disabilities may be given a break with families who will give them time, attention and fun, for a few days each month, allowing their families a chance to recharge their batteries. Training is provided if medical knowledge is needed.
Parent and Child
Parent and child/children foster care is for children and their parents, either mother or father or both together. This placement offers support and guidance to new parents with their baby or young child and helps them to build and develop parenting skills.
Young Persons Pathway
This is when a child is aged 11 or over upon placement. This type of placement is a rewarding opportunity to guide teenagers in a vital stage of their lives.
When children have to leave their parents they are vulnerable and require the stability of staying with their brothers and sisters. We need carers who are able to keep siblings together. This could be short term, long term or simply for a respite.
The application process
There are a number of steps you will have to take to successfully become a foster carer and we aim to complete this process within six months.
Once you have made an initial enquiry, one of our team will give you a call to talk things through. We can then arrange to visit you at home, where we will talk you through the process in a bit more detail.
There is no obligation to go ahead and make an application at this stage, but we are there to help and guide you if you do decide to make an application.
Following your home visit we will carry out a series of checks to assess your suitability for becoming a foster carer. The checks are things such as your health, criminal record, references and a home health and safety check.
After all checks have been completed you will be asked to attend a short training course which provides you with the opportunity to find out more about what is involved.
Together with your social worker you will then complete a comprehensive report on your skills, abilities, background and strengths in working with children. This will enable us to match your skills with the right child or children.
You and your supervising social worker will then attend a fostering panel to consider your registration as a foster carer. A final decision will be made by the Agency Decision Maker and you will then be matched with a child or children.
We totally understand that making the decision to become a foster carer is a big life-changing decision. Throughout each stage you will have a dedicated worker who will support you / you and your family during the assessment and beyond.
Whether it's the very first time you've thought it about it or the hundredth, there are lots of young people in Wirral looking for loving carers just like you. We need to recruit more foster carers than ever before – do you have the heart?