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What are the foster care requirements?

If you’re interested in fostering, or you simply want to learn more about it, it’s important to understand the foster care requirements that are in place. There are specific fostering criteria that need to be met in order to be able to foster – from age and health, to needing a spare bedroom in your home. Learn everything you need to know about foster carer requirements now.

Who can foster?

The pool of foster carers, just like the pool of children needing to be fostered, is diverse. There is a plethora of young people and children who are waiting for a foster home – and that is replicated in the wide diversity of fosters carers, too. Regardless of race, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation, foster carers are accepted from a variety of different backgrounds. However, there are some criterion that must be met in order to pass the foster carer assessments:

Criteria for fostering

  • To be at least 21 years of age
  • To have a spare bedroom
  • To be in good health
  • To be a full-time resident in the UK (or have leave to remain)
  • To have enough time to provide support and care (usually on a full-time basis) to a child or young person

Could you foster?

Alongside the legal fostering requirements for the UK, there may be other factors worth considering before you apply to become a foster carer:

  • Experience – whether it’s through your family life or through volunteering, having some experience around children is beneficial if you’re wanting to foster.
  • Health – are you in good enough physical health to be able to foster – and do you foresee this changing in the future?
  • Support network – do you have a network of friends and family around you can rely on for support?
  • Financial security – do you have many outgoing payments? Can you afford fostering?
  • Home life – is your home environment safe for a young person or child?
  • Past – do you have any previous convictions?

However, people can often rule themselves out of fostering on the back of common myths:

  • Do you need qualifications to foster? – No formal qualifications are required – however, you will be trained to develop the skills required to foster, and achieve the training and development England fostering standards.
  • Is there an age limit to fostering? – There is no upper age limit to fostering. What is most important is that you are fit to care for any child.
  • Can you be single and foster? – Yes. However, you will need to demonstrate a network of support and financial security in order to support a foster child.
  • Do you have to be a homeowner? – No, but you need to be able to provide consistency for a young person or child living in your home.
  • Can your religion or sexual orientation prevent you from fostering? – No – any religion or sexual orientation can foster.

Think fostering is right for you? Learn more about the types of fostering and why you should choose fostering today. Alternatively, get in touch with one of our helpful experts at Capstone Foster Care for more information and advice.

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