This is an important part of the process, and while we’d prefer to visit you at home, it’s not always possible right now, and so we will arrange a video call.
However we meet up, it helps us get to know a little bit about you and your home life, and it gives you a chance to ask us any questions. It’s all informal and friendly, and there’s no obligation on either side. It’s purely about setting the scene and finding out if you’d like to take things further.
The sort of things we’ll tell you about includes the role and responsibilities of a foster parent, as well as our allowances, training and support. We’ll ask you why you want to foster, and a little bit about your life and circumstances. We’ll also answer any questions or concerns you might have.
The visit normally takes about an hour or two but could be longer if you have lots of questions. We’re here for you, so there’s no rush. It’s important to get things right, right at the start.
Afterwards, you’ll have as much time as you like to decide whether to continue. If you do, we’ll move onto the next stage – your fostering application.
Speak to our team today
One of our team is available to talk to you over the phone to answer any of your fostering queries.
You can get in touch by filling out our online enquiry form with any queries that you may have.
Your local office
We have local teams covering most of England. Find your local office today.
Frequently asked questions
How much is a foster parent paid?
Will I be paid in between fostering placements?
No, foster parents are only paid an allowance when they're caring for a child. For this reason, we advice foster parents to be open to a wider age range, as only fostering young children can lead to longer gaps in between placements.
However, we receive hundreds of referrals every day from local authorities and have a dedicated Referrals Team who match these children with the skills and experience of our foster parents.
In addition, we work closely with our foster parents whose children are approaching the date that’s planned for them to move on from their care and work with local authorities to identify any potential placements that can be planned in future.
What does the application process involve?
There are a number of stages within the fostering assessment, including:
- Social work visits with an assessing social worker – normally 8-10 visits across several months
- Background checks, including an enhanced DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service).
- Personal and professional references
- Training to prepare you in your role as a foster parent
All the information gathered throughout the process will be brought together in a Form F report and presented to an independent fostering panel, who will make a recommendation on your suitability to foster.
The process generally takes 4-6 months to complete, however, timescales may vary depending on your personal circumstances.
How long does the fostering application take?
The assessment process generally takes around 4-6 months from the moment you first get in touch - but every assessment is different and timescales may vary.
Got some more questions? Find out the answers here.