Joining a network of foster care professionals
When you become a foster carer you join a network of care professionals.
For a new foster carer it can be reassuring to know this and that not every decision and responsibility will fall on you. Part of the foster carer’s role is to liaise with these professionals and keep them inform on the progress of the child.
When we explain this element of fostering to people the response can be a bit mixed. Some people have experienced a similar need to provide reports for others in their previous careers, and this is like water off a duck’s back to them. For others it can seem a little alien at first. Well, part of our job as your fostering agency is to ensure you are comfortable with this and, with the support provided, it soon becomes quite a simple affair.
The professional caring network
As the person offering 24 hour care on a day to day basis, you the foster carer are the most critical person involved in delivering the best possible outcome for a child or young person.
It is important to also understand, however, that when you become a foster carer you become part of professional caring network. You are not simply left alone with a child and expected to cope. A network of support exists which includes the local authority, educational and health professionals, and social workers. These individuals and organisations will all take an interest in the child and will want to follow their progress.
As part of your ongoing foster carer training, we will prepare you for working as part of this team. It maybe you have transferable skills that will assist here or there are life experiences you can draw upon to help. Everyone has been part of team at some point in their life and will understand what it is like when everyone is working together, striving towards the best outcome. When you look at it this way, it all starts to become more palatable.
A professional role
A core pillar of our values at Perpetual Fostering is to recognise and reinforce the professionalism of our foster carers and this is reflected in your development training programme. When foster carers establish professional relationships with social workers or with the child’s birth family this training can prove a big help and make things easier for you.
As your fostering agency we are also here to advise, guide and assist you in performing this professional role. For example, as foster carer you will need to attend looked after children review meetings and we will be at your side.