We’re a diverse and welcoming fostering agency, so we open our foster carer applications to everyone. Your race, culture, sexual orientation, home ownership status and income don’t affect your chances. In fact, we believe the diversity of the foster parents we work with is a positive thing when finding the best possible family for a foster child.
The most important thing we look for in a potential foster parent is that they can offer a safe, stable, caring and supportive home for a child or young person who might have had a difficult life so far.
Here’s an idea of some of the qualities we look for in potential foster carers.
- You must be over 25.
- You have a spare bedroom for each foster child.
- You have a genuine motivation to care for children and young people.
- You understand the difference between looking after your own children and caring for a foster child.
- You have a driver’s licence.
- You have time available to attend meetings, appointments and training.
- You are medically assessed as fit to foster.
- You receive positive police checks, and family and friends’ references.
- You’re aware how fostering will impact your own children, family and friends.
- You’re able to work with our team of foster care professionals.
- You’re able to manage difficult and stressful situations.
- You want to foster because you want to help a foster child, not because you expect anything from them.
- You’re patient – it might take time for your foster child to accept your care and point of view.
- You’re empathetic and able to relate to how a child may be feeling.
- You’re not expecting a ‘role model’ child. Some of the children we work with have behavioural problems they need help with, such as lying, stealing or sexual behaviour. You are able to offer a home to a child or young person who may display challenging and complex behaviours.
- You have realistic expectations of a child’s ability due to the neglect and abuse they may have experienced, or because of being out of education for a significant time.
- You can help your foster child bond with and feel affection for other people.
- You are able to show them what trusting relationships look like.
- You can help your foster child understand and manage their emotions.
- You have a strong network of family and friends who can help with the pressures of fostering.
- You’re able to teach a child the life skills they will require for when they return home or leave care.
- If something goes wrong, you can accept it, learn from it and move on.
- You’re able to take on advice and guidance from our foster care experts.
Sometimes there are other things we need to consider when looking for the right foster parent for a child or young person. You need to ensure you have time available and flexible working hours to be able to care for a child in your care.