The fostering process

If you’re keen to start fostering with us, we will aim to complete the fostering process as quickly as possible for you, and the whole process usually takes four to six months from Step 4 onwards.

However, the length of time it can take to get approved as a foster carer with us is reliant on a few variables such as your availability and how long each step in your assessment takes.

To avoid unnecessary delay in the process, we run steps 5 and 6 alongside each other.


STEP 11 day

Talk to us

We will have an informal chat with you to gain a better understanding of you and respond to any questions you may have about us or fostering.

STEP 21 week

Home visit

If you decide to progress, we will arrange a time to visit you at home. This will give you an opportunity to meet us and ask more questions. We will also go over the process of becoming a foster carer in more detail.

STEP 31 month

Skills to foster training course

You will participate in an in-depth training course called ‘Skills to Foster’. This will provide you with detailed insight into what being a foster carer means, as well as helping you start to develop the essential skills and knowledge you will need to be a successful foster carer.


The application

After the ‘Skills to Foster’ course, should it be agreed fostering is right for you and your household, you will be asked to submit an application form. Once we have received this application a social worker will be given the task of evaluating your suitability to foster, and we will support you throughout the process.

STEP 5In parallel

Statutory Checks & References

Once we have your application, we will conduct the necessary statutory checks and contact the relevant people to provide the necessary references. This is critical for the protection of children in foster care and to ensure you are fit and suitable to foster.

STEP 6In parallel

Getting to know you

Your assessor will work with you to gain an understanding of your personal history, your interests and hobbies, and the qualities you have that will make you a successful foster carer. This process can take several months but really helps us and you understand which children and young people you would be best suited to caring for.


Foster Panel

You have almost finished the process and the next step is to attend a special meeting (‘Foster Panel’) which will review your application and the assessment that has been completed. We will do everything we can to ensure you are as comfortable in the meeting as you can be, and the social worker that has been working with you will attend alongside you. Following panel the panel’s recommendation about your suitability to foster will be sent to our Agency Decision Maker, and they will make the final decision about your suitability to be approved as a foster carer.

How long does it take to become a foster parent?

Fostering a child might seem like a long and difficult process, but it is very rewarding. On average, becoming a
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Ready to talk about fostering?

Contact us

Ready to talk about fostering?

Get in touch with us today for a friendly chat
Contact us