Becoming a foster carer is regarded to be the most rewarding experience that you can go through. It allows you the chance to raise an underprivileged child to ensure that they have the best possible upbringing in your care before they can before they can have a permanent home.
Child fostering is big decision to make as you will be responsible for the well-being of a young child and if you haven’t had children of your own, it can be quite tricky. In this case, therefore, if you are interested in becoming a foster caregiver, you need to follow some steps.
To begin with, you need to contact your local care agency and ask them for details about becoming a foster carer. They will send you information and answer any questions that you have. They will then visit you at your home to further discuss fostering with you. If you feel that you want to proceed, the next step is seeking an application. The advisor who visited you will determine whether or not you qualify to apply.
The Application Process
Depending on your family situation, the application process will take anywhere between four to six months. During this process, you will begin to comprehend how fostering works and how being a foster carer will affect your life and your family.
The the agency will in this process collect all your information, conduct background checks and contact references. They will require a medical check exam from your GP as well as a standard check for your home. It is important to ensure that this is open and honest as possible and ask any questions that may arise. Understand that the agency wants to approve you as they need foster caregivers but they need to ascertain that the needs of the children in care are met.
The Assessment Process
A social worker visits your home several times to interview you throughout the assessment process. You will be expected to attend a training course as well and once your assessment is complete, it is forwarded to the fostering panel to decide whether or not you have been approved to be a foster care giver. You will get involved in the entire decision-making process and can attend the panel meeting.
The Foster Care Review
Once approved, you will be given ongoing support by the Supervising Social Worker. They will support you in your fostering, and will conduct yearly review. In the review, you gather together with your family including other foster children, discuss your experiences with foster care, and share what you have been able to achieve and what you feel you need in regards to additional training and support.