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Grandmother and Granddaughter

Why Foster?

Children and young people come into care for so many reasons. They come from all backgrounds, faiths, and have their own unique and varied experiences and needs. 

Almost all will have suffered some neglect, trauma and/or abuse, and every one of them needs the security, warmth, care and support our Foster Carers provide. 

We have never regretted our decision to Foster. We feel we have learnt so much in such a short time with the support from Empower Family.

Why are Foster Carers Needed?

Foster Carers are needed to give young people in their care the opportunity to enjoy their childhood, provide them with the security to be themselves, explore their skills and give them the experience of being carefree. 

Young people entering care may have never been provided with a structured routine, a balanced and nourishing diet, appropriate clothing and the correct health care. For young people who've experienced a fragmented and unpredictable home life, our Foster Carers give them reassurance, reliability, stability and organisation. 

Why Consider Fostering?

People have unique reasons for becoming Foster Carers, and many of them share similar qualities that help them provide excellent and inspiring care to those in need. Common motivations include wanting to make a positive difference in the world and providing additional support to vulnerable children. 

Why Foster Children Need You?

It is essential to provide children with the support and guidance they need in order to create a safe future for themselves. Too many children don't have the loving environment that a family should provide, but with your help, they can get access to resources that will give them the stability they need to thrive. In addition, fostering is a highly fulfilling experience. You will be able to watch the children you foster grow and overcome obstacles, which will be a rewarding experience that will help make any hardships you face worth it. 

Considering Fostering?

Many individuals choose to become Foster Carers for a rang of motives, ranging from personal experiences to the desire to make a positive change. Despite the variety of backgrounds, our carers share certain similarities which aid them in giving outstanding and inspiring care to those in need.

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Support young people in achieving success and growth

If you have a strong desire to help children live better, more fulfilling lives, and you are dedicated to seeing them through any struggles or roadblocks, then you would make an excellent foster carer. It is your enthusiasm and passion to support children and help them reach their highest potential that is most important in this role. 

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You want to make a difference

If you're connected to someone who has gone through the fostering system or know what it's like to be in a vulnerable spot, you could create a positive difference in the lives of those in need. Any child or young person in the fostering system has already gone through a lot and will be looking for a stable and secure place to thrive. By giving them a safe atmosphere and offering them a firm foundation and loving environment, you can be the answer to a brighter future for them. 

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You've been there

Some of our Foster Carers were brought up in foster homes themselves and understand how profoundly beneficial it can be to have a supportive presence in times of distress. Their own experiences can be essential in helping foster children through traumas and helping them develop the courage and strength to face their future. 

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You have an empty nest?

If you're a parent who has already raised their own children who have now flown the nest, fostering could be a great option for you. Now that your own children are grown and out of the house, you have the perfect opportunity to give a child or young person the care and stability they need to succeed. With your first-hand knowledge of the highs and lows of parenting, you'll be able to give them the guidance they need to make it through the tough times. 

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You want to start a family?

People who have desired to have children of their own may find fostering to be a beneficial path. This can offer them the opportunity to offer a secure and loving home to those in need and experience all the joys that come with being a parent. Fostering can be life-changing experience for both the parent and the child. 

  • Can I foster if I am single?
    Yes, of course you can. Anyone can foster as long as they are able to demonstrate that they have the skills and capacity to care for a child. You need to be resilient, kind and have a support network around you.
  • How long does it take to become a Foster Carer?
    The length of time for assessments varies depending on individual circumstances. However, we complete assessments within three to five months on average.
  • Do I have to have a spare room?
    Yes, you do need to have a spare room. All children must have a room of their own unless they are a sibling group and the social worker agrees that they can share a room.
  • I am over 60 can I still apply?
    We welcome applications from individuals of any age and there is no upper age limit! Everyone who applies will have a medical with their GP and as long as you are physically and emotionally fit enough to support a child/young people, then age is not an issue.
  • I have a criminal record can I still foster?
    It's important that you let us know about any criminal records you may have. A previous conviction will not necessarily preclude you from fostering. Much will depend on the nature of the offence and when it occurred. We will carry out an enhanced DBS check on everyone who applied and would ask that you are open and honest from the start with any convictions. This way we can assess whether you can continue on the assessment journey.
  • What training will I receive?
    We have a full and varied training program. Some of this is online and some face to face. As part of your assessment we will run workshops on top of your 'Skills to Foster' course. Again, these will be both face to face and virtual depending on the need at the time. We will try to be flexible and ensure that this fits around your life and young people. We are here to support you with your training.
  • What Support can I get?
    When you become an approved Foster Carer with Empower Fostering, you will be allocated a supervising social worker to meet with you once a fortnight to discuss how the child/young person is progressing. You will also be able to speak to a team member seven days a week, 24 hours per day, 365 days a year. In addition, there are support meetings with other Foster Carers in your area.
  • What training and learning opportunities are available?
    After completing your 'Skills to Foster' course and becoming an approved carer, there will be planned learning opportunities available throughout the year, covering topics such as 'keeping children safe', 'managing behavior', 'developing self-esteem in children' and 'promoting good health'.
  • How do I become a Foster Carer?
    You will receive advice and information from one of our team members during your initial phone contact. When you are ready, you will be assigned a dedicated assessor who will visit you and assist you throughout the process. A referee, medical, and DBS check will be done, and you will be asked to undergo a 'Skills to Foster' training session. The assessment procedure typically takes 4-6 months.
  • What Happens at an Initial Home Visit?
    One of our team members will visit your house for a casual talk on looking after small children and young people. We'll discuss the process of becoming a Foster Carer, offer book and research recommendations, and go over your responsibilities as a Foster Carer.
  • How do you match a child or young person with Foster Carers?
    We carefully match Foster Carers with children. During the assessment process, we will get a better understanding of what would work for you and your home, which will help us make the right matches.
  • Do I have any say in the child or young person placed with me?
    Yes. The matching process is fundamental for you and the child or young person. We will match the needs and requirements of the child or young person with what you can offer. This will be discussed with you in-depth during your assessment.
  • Can you foster if you are in debt?
    If you have debt, you are not necessarily disqualified to foster. This would be examined during the fostering assessment and approval process because each person's circumstance differs. Do not be worried that your debt will prevent you from becoming a Foster Carer. To learn more, get in touch with us for a completely private and informal chat.
  • Can I get a mortgage as a Foster Carer?
    Yes! There are several mortgage lenders that will allow you use your entire fostering income, and there are even specific mortgage lenders and products made only for foster carers.
  • Can you be a Foster Carer if you live in affordable housing?
    Certainly, being a resident of affordable housing does not stop you from wishing to foster.
  • Do you get paid per family or per child when fostering?
    Typically, the foster allowance is determined by how many children or young people you are looking after.

Ready to talk about fostering?
Get in touch with us today for a friendly chat. 

01823 756 100  |

Unit 2 Prockters Farm Offices, West Monkton, Taunton Somerset, TA2 8QN

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