Which Fostering Agency Should I Choose?
The next big decision is which one?
When it comes to choosing the right private fostering agency, there are a number of criteria we think you should assess and we’ve outlined them here.
What Support is Available?
While fostering is incredibly rewarding, it can also be challenging at times. We really believe it’s important for carers to have the support of contacts within their agency.
Sometimes, that means face to face meetings. But some of the steps we’ve taken over the past few months are to engage more technology to we can have face to face virtual meetings with our carers regularly. This makes support more readily available for you when you need it.
Everyone who comes to fostering comes because they care about the wellbeing of children and young people. But the financial side of things cannot be overlooked. Having a child in your home can bring with it costs. Agencies pay different rates in different areas and cases.
Various local authorities pay foster carers at different levels and there is generally a higher allowances for more complicated placements.
But agencies often vary in terms of how much they pay too.
It’s not a topic everyone feels comfortable talking about when it comes to fostering. But we think it’s really important to discuss pay and we pay very competitively.
So when it comes to choosing an agency, we would recommend having the conversation about pay early.
With anything new you do, some training is helpful. We don’t believe in throwing people in the deep end. SO when you’re choosing an agency, find out about the training and how accessible/frequent it will be.
Are Their Existing Cares Happy?
Ask to speak to existing carers or read their stories. Good fostering agencies have happy and well supported carers and many will be happy to talk to you about their experiences.
It’s not a final decision.
Whatever decision you make, it doesn’t have to be a final one. So if you’re reading this post having made a decision previously that you’re unhappy with, then don’t feel stuck. You can transfer agencies. We pay fees for successful transfers to us because we’re confident that if you join us, you’ll be with us for the long haul. We invest heavily into supporting our carers.
So if you’re thinking about taking the plunge and either applying to be a foster carer for the first time or transferring from a local authority or another agency, give us a call.