Once you complete your application, your allocated supervising social worker will begin a detailed assessment of your suitability to become a foster carer.
This will involve talking to you and your partner (if you have one), and any others living in your household, including your children. The conversation would revolve around your history and life experiences.
This is called a Form F assessment. As part of it, we also have to carry out several checks, including health and police checks, and take up personal and professional references. We will also need to speak to any former partners and adult children. As fostering involves the whole household, police checks will need to be carried out on all adult members of the family.
Having a criminal conviction will not automatically rule someone out from fostering. It depends on the nature and circumstance of the offence. Your supervising social worker will be able to advise you about this.
All carers are expected to complete initial training as part of the assessment process. This will give you an insight into what it means to be a foster carer, your role and your expectations. The training will also include the opportunity to meet with our existing foster carers to learn from their experience.
The assessment process will usually take several weeks. It will involve several meetings with your social worker, where you will have the opportunity to discuss many topics relating to fostering.