Common Foster Care Questions

Tuesday 08 November 2016

Common Foster Care Questions


We know that when it comes to taking the first step to becoming a foster carer, a lot of questions come with it. Below, we’ll answer some of the most common questions you might have to help you make the right decision for you.

Do I really need a spare bedroom?

There are very few restrictions placed upon our application process. We accept a wide range of carers from all walks of life. However, one thing we do ask is that you have a spare bedroom for the foster child.

This is because the vulnerable children who enter our care need to feel safe and secure. Having their own space that they can escape into really helps with this. It makes the transition process much easier, not just for them, but for you too.

There are limited situations where a spare bedroom might not be necessary. However, this largely applies to those looking after young siblings.

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So, the answer here is yes, having a space bedroom is a necessity for the majority of our foster carers. However, we welcome you to contact us and discuss your personal situation with a member of our friendly team.

How is fostering different to adoption?

This is by far one of the most common questions we are asked. It is important to realise that fostering and adoption are two very different things.

The majority of foster placements are temporary. Your job as a carer would be to provide a safe, loving environment for a child until they can be placed back with their biological family or they are old enough/able to care for themselves. Adoption is a legal process where the parental responsibilities are transferred over to the adoptive family. The child’s last name is usually changed and they become a permanent part of the family.

So in short, fostering is a less permanent arrangement, while adoption is taking in a child as your own for the rest of their life.

However, confusion can arise when it comes to long-term fostering. In this situation, a child may not be able to return to their biological family immediately, but they are not placed into adoption. So you would be responsible for caring for the child through to adulthood. Many of our older foster children stay with their foster parents after 18 with our Staying Put scheme.

I have a criminal record, will this prevent me from being accepted?

A criminal record will not automatically prevent you from becoming a foster carer. A criminal background check is part of the application process so we do encourage you to be up-front with us about any convictions you may have.

Providing the conviction isn’t a child-related offense, or a sexual offense, you may still be accepted. It largely depends upon the type and severity of the charge.

All of our fostering applications are assessed individually so it’s a good idea to give us a call first. If you have any questions our friendly team can answer them for you.

You’ve come this far into researching fostering, why not make the next step and give us a call today! We’d love to hear from you.