Who Can Foster

Can I be a foster carer?

The simple answer is yes, anyone can become a foster carer. We provide all the help and training you may need so anyone from a variety of backgrounds and ages can become a great foster carer. They all have one thing in common: they are willing and able to provide a stable home in which a young person can live safely and happily.

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National Minimum Standards

Although we welcome anyone to apply to be a foster carer, there are some minimum requirements set out by the government that must be met when providing foster care. These standards are simply there to make sure anyone who wants to be a foster carer has the capacity to provide the right environment for a child to live.

You can read the government's national minimum standards document here:

Fostering service national minimum standards

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You must be over 21

There is no upper age limit so as long as you are fit, energetic and healthy, and over twenty one you can apply to be a foster carer.

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You must have a spare bedroom

Children need space. That’s why it’s important you have a spare bedroom available at the time of your application. Any building extension or conversion work must be completed before you apply.

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You must have good spoken and written English

Communication is an important part of being a good foster carer. Although we do not require any specific qualification, it is necessary that you have a good level of spoken and written English.

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You must tell us about any convictions you may have

We must do everything in our power to ensure the safety of the children in our care, that’s why it is important you tell us if you have been convicted of certain criminal offences, such as violence or crimes against children. More minor offences may not affect your application, but you must inform us of any convictions during the assessment process.

You can read more about the National Minimum Standards and our team are on hand to answer all of your questions. As you’d expect, we encourage openness and honesty throughout the application process.

Want to know more?


Inside your Fostering Guide...

  • Applying to be a foster carer
  • The different kinds of foster care
  • Support for our foster carers
  • Our training and development programmes
  • How fostering affects your finances

Get in touch today

01227 931 778

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Alternatively use our contact form to send us a message or get in touch.

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Relevant FAQs

  • I smoke, does that mean I can’t foster?

    No but it will mean you are limited in the age range of children you can care for. Fostered children and young people need positive role models so we may ask that smokers do so outdoors and certainly never in your home or your car. A child or young person's care and health comes first and foremost.

  • We have pets, does that mean we can’t foster?

    About 65% of our carers have a pet of some sort, after all they're part of the family too! We assess your pets as part of your assessment, asking if they have regular vaccinations, are relaxed with human contact and won't pose a threat to a child or young person. Similarly, when we place a young person in a household with pets, we do everything we can to ensure the young person will respect your pets.

  • I don’t drive, will this affect my ability to foster?

    We would prefer that you drive and have access to a car but we accept that some people don't. This shouldn't affect your ability to foster, as long as you source suitable transport for things like appointments, clubs and school.

  • Will the foster children have challenging behaviour?

    Some may present challenging behaviour depending on the nature of their background. We will be told about the child or young person's behaviour at the referral stage and will share all we know with you. Occasionally, challenging behaviour only presents itself once the young person is settled and comfortable in your company. You will receive comprehensive training to help you manage situations and we’re always available to help should you need it.