The decision to become a foster carer is a long process. It’s a commitment from the first moment you think that it could be the career for you. Then you take time to research and make enquiries with fostering agencies to discuss further. If you’re one of these people that have just started the journey of this thought process then here’s some help in getting to that next stage of calling a foster care agency near you.
COVID-19 restrictions have not stopped the need for foster carers. So, take a moment to take a look at our summary based on the many questions we get from potential foster carers to help you decide if this is a role for you in your current position.
Can you foster a child or young person?
- You can foster if you have a mortgage, pay rent to a private landlord or live in a council property. You need to be able to give a fostered child their own room in a secure home environment. If you can, then you can foster.
- There’s no need to be married or in a relationship to foster. Single people can make outstanding foster carers. Single men can especially provide a good role model where one may have been lacking before. OwnLife Fostering welcomes couples and single people whatever their sexuality.
- People sometimes think that their age is a stumbling block to becoming a foster carer. In fact, you can become a foster carer if you are over the age of 23. There’s no upper age limit on fostering in the UK. A lot of people assume they are unable to foster children if they’re over 55 years old but, if you have energy and empathy, you can foster children. We find that older carers can bring a lot of expertise from their previous career, parenthood or life in general.
- Before becoming a foster carer it’s important to understand the different types of placements. At Ownlife Fostering, the majority of our children are over the age of ten and generally teenagers. We also have opportunities to foster young parents and their children as well as groups of siblings. You can read more about our placements here.
- You don’t need to be a parent to foster. But you need to be able to show you have enough experience of working with young people. This can be through work, family contact or volunteering. When you start the application process with us and become a foster carer, we provide training and support to give you all the skills you will need.
- If you’re fostering young children, there needs to be at least one full-time foster carer. But fostering a slightly older child means you can often work while they are at school.
- You will have a compassionate nature able to listen, be realistic, honest and respectful while remaining patient and tolerant at all times.
- The most important thing is that you have what it takes to inspire children and young people to own and take control of their own lives. You need to be full of determination to never give up. To support, encourage and develop children.
For information on why you should foster, and how to become a foster carer, get in touch with us at 02083133304. Please don’t dismiss the role until you speak to us. We often have people thinking that as they are a single parent that the role may not be for them. But if you are over the age of 23 and have a spare bedroom it could well be something for you.
Here’s a few words from our founder to help you gain further insight into the benefit of a family run foster care agency.
Foster carers needed in South London
We still have an urgent need for foster carers in the following areas Croydon, Greenwich, Lewisham, Bexley, Lambeth, Bromley, Merton, Sutton, and Southwark. Become a foster carer with OwnLife Fostering.