Five Top Tips: Getting Through Foster Recruitment
As an independent fostering agency, we believe in empowering our foster carers – however and whenever we can. That’s why we thought it important to outline the foster recruitment process as a whole in a previous post. This time we’d like to share the most important tips for anyone who is serious about becoming a foster carer.
Before The Process Begins:
1) Think hard about why you want to become a carer – if you’re unable to explain key points, or struggle to fill an A4 page with your reasons, you may find phone interviews and in-person workshops difficult.
2) Since social workers are interested in your family chronology, map it out and make notes about interpersonal relationships; they will take an interest in how your family functions.
During the Process:
3) Prepare yourself for the response call: the social worker will be looking to find out about your life, such as your financial health, if you have a spare room, and whether you have a criminal background, amongst others. It doesn’t hurt to jot down some notes and organise your thoughts beforehand.
4) The initial home visit: make sure you and your family act naturally in your home environment, and ensure the prospective bedroom of the child is in tip-top condition. Prove to them why your home is more than suitable for a foster child.
5) The series of home visits: as with the above point, it’s natural to want to put your best feet forward. Just keep in mind that the social worker’s job is to closely observe your family. Between six to eight visits – each lasting between one and an hour and a half – will be enough to paint an accurate picture, so avoid creating doubt by remaining true to yourselves.
At the end of the day, remember: foster carers have to be rigorously assessed, and it’s the social worker’s job to be thorough. As an agency, we believe that the high standards we maintain are one of our core strengths. The bottom line is, if you concentrate on honesty and transparency at all times, that’s half the process taken care of. We also think that old mantra – “it never hurts to be prepared” – applies nicely. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if any of the above is unclear, or if you have any questions about recruitment.