One of the big concerns many people have when considering becoming a foster carer is whether being single will mean they are not eligible. The truth is, if you have a spare room, the ability to drive and are able to provide a safe and living home for a child, we would love to hear from you.
Becoming a foster carer takes a lot of time and commitment. Because of this, working the usual 9 to 5 is difficult. However, many single foster carers work part-time, bank or flexible hours. You will also receive financial support as a foster carer and depending on your situation you may also be able to claim working tax credits.
Becoming a Foster Carer
At Fostering Solutions we have many foster carers who are single. Nicola is one of them. She’s recently been through the application and assessment process to become an approved foster carer.Here she talks about her decision to foster and the journey she’s been through.
We asked Nicola why she decided to become a foster carer: “My career choice had always followed the retail management path. In one particular store, the staff were predominantly young women and I soon became, not only a manager but a counsellor, listener and advisor.Having brought up my daughter and twin boys as a single mum, I was accustomed to dealing with some problems that youngsters face”.
The Application and Assessment Process
We understand that the application and assessment process may seem daunting, especially if you will be going through the process as a single applicant. Nicola shares her experiences of her application and assessment journey below:
“Following an initial telephone conversation, I accepted the offer of a home visit from one of the Fostering Solutions social workers.I was so nervous that I asked my Mum, who is really supportive, to attend the visit with me.The meeting was very informative and relaxed. We discussed, family, pets, what I liked to do in my spare time and more.It was all very informal but educational too.Following the visit, I did leave it over a month before deciding to complete the application form; it is a life-changing decision and I wanted to be one hundred percent sure!”
Nicola told us, “I was really naïve at the beginning about what the assessment would involve.I was allocated an assessing social worker who came to my home and explained the process.I felt totally relaxed during the regular visits and I can honestly say that I enjoyed the experience. There is a lot of reflecting on your past to consider but I was assured there are no right or wrong answers.I am still in contact with the assessor today as she really did become part of our family for that time”.
“By the time I attended the formal panel who would approve me (or not) as a single Foster Carer, I felt so confident, I just knew that I had so made the right choices and that Fostering Solutions and I would make a great team.What an achievement when I stepped out of the room as an approved single foster carer!”
If you’re inspired by Nicola’s story and are considering becoming a foster carer, get in touch with us today.