Fostering can be one of the most rewarding experiences in a person’s life. You’ll not only offer a child a loving home when they need it most, but you’ll provide compassion, affection, and guidance to help them feel welcome and supported.
If you feel fostering is your vocation, you might be eager to learn about its requirements. Continue reading to learn what assessments all foster parents go through.
An Initial Foster Application
Submitting a foster application is the first step toward becoming a foster parent. Visit thefca.co.uk to send a message to its dedicated team in your region, or you can give them a call to start the first stage of the rewarding journey. The team is more than happy to provide information or advice on fostering, which can help you make an informed decision. Plus, they will support you every step of the way during the fostering assessment process.
A Home Visit or Video Call
After talking to a fostering team member, they will discuss a fostering advisor visiting your home or organizing a video call. It is an opportunity to get to know you further, answer any questions you might have, and provide informative information on the fostering process, the role’s daily requirements, the allowances you could receive, and the different fostering options available.
Statutory Checks and References
If you’re happy to move forward, you’ll first need to consent to a foster agency completing statutory checks and following up on your references. Passing the checks will ensure your fostering application is successful, which will allow you to move on to the fostering assessment process.
The checks will include:
- A DBS check
- Local authority check
- An ex-partner reference (depending on your circumstances)
- A medical report
- Academic references for any children in your home
- Personal references
- Evidence of citizenship
- Employment references
A Thorough Fostering Assessment
After a successful application, an assessing social worker will complete your Form F fostering assessment. To determine your suitability and the safety of any foster children, your allocated assessing social worker will visit your home many times over a few months. During each visit, they’ll gain an insight into your personality, lifestyle, health, family, childhood, previous relationships, employment history, and interests.
Also, they’ll carry out various checks to determine your suitability, such as completing a home safety check. They’ll need to gain a detailed understanding of your property, any pets you own, the people who live with you, or if you have children who don’t live with you. Also, you’ll need to provide two references, and an assessing social worker will visit them to learn more about your suitability.
Meet with a Fostering Panel
Once the Form F assessment is complete, your assessing social worker will ensure you’re fully prepared to meet with a fostering panel. The experienced professionals will review your assessment and provide a recommendation on your fostering suitability. After receiving approval, you can begin your journey as a foster parent and start making a positive difference in the lives of vulnerable children and young people.
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