Improving Skills as a Foster Carer
Key to our success as a fostering agency is helping our carers to train, improve and keep making progress. This is a core effort we make: consistent, sustained improvement in standards makes for better care for foster children everywhere.
Suffice to say, we’re firm believers that everyone should always keep learning. Here are some ideas about how to keep the upward trajectory:
Keep Detailed Records
Throughout any foster placement, as a carer you should keep consistent, detailed records. These include any accidents or incidents, and how you responded to and handled the situation. As your social worker reviews these documents, they’ll be able to provide guidance and detailed feedback on your performance. This way, you can learn what you most need to work at – always in a supportive environment.
The Importance of a Mentor
We always allocate mentors to our foster carers in their first year of approval – this is crucial as we never want the people who work with us to feel alone and helpless! A mentor can be a tremendously valuable source of information. Sharing whatever is on your mind with them pays back multiple benefits.
They’ll be able to provide you with plenty of fostering experience and wisdom: whatever the situation may be, outside perspective always helps. We’re happy to say that great friendships have blossomed out of these mentoring relationships. We’ve also mentioned fostering community events in a previous post: these are a great way to meet people who also care for children.
Partner Proactively With Us
If you foster with Perpetual, we encourage you to work proactively with us. Thanks to our rigorous assessment process, our experienced, highly-qualified staff have already been impressed by your ability to do the job exceptionally well – so well done! Given their many years of experience, they are best placed to help you identify your strengths and aid you in improving as a carer.
To this end, we hold an annual training matrix for skill improvement: it’s always on a Saturday, so our carers don’t need to interrupt their busy working week! This goes alongside the personal development plans that all our carers put together – it sets out how they will improve in their role as the year progresses.