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Fact! You can foster and still work

It can be viewed as an advantage, although it is not a necessity, if you have previous experience of caring for, or working with children. This will put you in good stead for tackling any issues that may arise with the child placed in your care.
The needs of your own children should always be considered when deciding on the type of fostering and age of child you would be suitable to care for.  Fostering is not just a decision for the carers as it will also impact anyone else who is living within the household.
Foster carers need to be flexible in their approach to foster children and be aware that the way a situation may have been handled with their own child may not be the best way for this child.  Also at times a child or young person may come from a troubled family, or may have experienced abuse or neglect. It is therefore essential that a foster carer is non-judgemental about the child or their background. A foster carer must possess a positive attitude to diversity and difference for situations they have been used to with their own children.

A third of people are unaware that foster carers receive financial support, and believe that you need to be in full-time employment.

  • In a couple, one of you can work full-time and one part-time/flexible
  • As a single foster carer, you can have part- time employment
  • You don’t have to work, you can just foster

Some agencies will ask for at least one person to give up work to become a full time carer.  At NFA we ask that couples arrange their working hours so that one carer can be available full time, and that single foster carers be at home full time or have flexible, part-time employment.

If you can be flexible in order to accommodate the needs of the child, as well as contact, attending school and social work meetings and reviews, then we are happy for you to continue working to a certain degree.

The fostering allowance

It is worth noting that most fostering agencies offer a generous allowance to help out with the financial situation and ensure both the fostered child and foster family can live comfortably.

The allowance is given to cover the varied needs of each foster child, and to allow the children and carers to have a good standard of living.

Fostering isn’t as a chance to earn money, but the opportunity to give a caring home to a child that needs it.

But let’s be practical: you should also consider that we do not pay an allowance when there is no child in placement, so this should be a factor when looking into how you would accommodate the needs of yourself and your family during these times.

Are you ready to find out more about fostering?

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Start your fostering journey with National Fostering Group

  • We’re 14 close-knit independent fostering agencies
  • Over 3,500 carers already part of our family
  • Benefit from our local support groups and social workers