As we enjoy the festive period, the team at Family Care Fostering have just one wish… for more foster carers in the Northwest and the Midlands!
Recent figures published by Ofsted show that during the last financial year, a total of 4,080 fostering households were approved across the UK while 5,130 stopped fostering – a loss of 1,050 fostering households.
Why fostering matters:
The need for foster carers is profound, and it arises from circumstances beyond a young person’s control. By becoming a foster carer, you will provide stability and love to those who need it most. Your commitment can be the turning point in a child’s life, shaping their future with care, understanding, and support. With nearly 70,000 children in care and 55,000 fostering families, we need people to take action and become foster carers.
How to become a foster carer:
There are three basic requirements that are needed to become a foster carer in the UK:
-At least 21 years old (there is no upper age limit)
-Have at least one spare bedroom
-Have UK citizenship or indefinite leave to remain
Whilst these are the only hard and fast requirements, there are many skills and qualities foster carers should have. You should be caring, compassionate, patient, understanding and everything in between. Most fostering assessments will take 4-5 months to complete. This includes completing the fostering assessment, necessary checks and references, and pre-approval training. There are 5 key stages applicants must go through to become a foster parent in the UK. Read more about the individual stages here
Following approval, approximate waiting time until you are caring for a young person will depend on your matching preferences. Typically, our newly approved foster carers will wait between 4-8 weeks for their first child.
Do foster carers get paid?
Foster carers deserve to feel valued and appreciated for their hard work. At Family Care, we’re committed to providing ongoing support and recognition to our carers, because we understand that their dedication and care make a real difference in the lives of young people. That’s why we offer a combination of a ‘boarding-out’ fee, which is based on the government’s national minimum rates (between £154 – £233 per week), and a professional fee. This means our foster carers can earn between £407 – £750 per week, depending on the age and needs of the young person they care for and the type of fostering provided.
You can also benefit from a fixed-tax exemption of up to £18,140 per year, shared equally among approved carers in the household. Plus, you’ll receive tax relief for every week a child is in your care. You should have registered as self-employed when you started to foster and you will need to file tax returns. In your tax return, you’ll be able to claim:
-A tax exemption of up to £18,140 per household
-Tax relief for every week you foster a child
What rewards and benefits do foster carers receive?
In return for your hard work and dedication to making a difference to children’s lives, we offer a number of benefits and rewards to our foster carers:
– Two weeks-annual leave
– Refer a friend scheme of £1,500
– Foster carer long service rewards:
– 24/7 support from a Supervising Social Worker (SSW):
– Support groups with fellow foster carers:
– Gain Level 3 Diploma for the Children & Young People’s Workforce qualification
What support do you offer to transferring foster carers?
We understand that considering a change in foster agencies can be a tough decision, but we’re here to assure you that, at Family Care, you’ll find a supportive and caring community that puts the needs of our foster families and children first.
Switching to a new fostering provider can be a daunting prospect as it involves finding the right provider that can cater to your personal needs. Although the reasons for wanting to transfer may differ, it can be challenging to navigate through the uncertainty of finding a suitable provider.
At Family Care, we understand this concern, which is why we have provided a list of common reasons foster carers consider transferring.
Are you ready to make a life changing difference?
If you live in the Northwest or the Midlands and are interested in exploring becoming a foster carer, we are here to support you every step of the way.
Get in touch with us by completing our short inquiry form online or call us at 0800 5 677677.
There is no obligation for anything more than a chat.
Embarking on the journey of fostering is a significant decision that can profoundly impact your family and the life of a young person in need. By preparing yourself, choosing the right time and place for conversations, and approaching the topic with openness and honesty, you can foster a supportive and understanding environment. Addressing concerns, sharing resources, seeking professional guidance when needed, and showing patience and understanding are essential steps in navigating this process together. Family Care understands the importance of support for foster carers and is committed to providing the necessary assistance throughout this incredible journey. With our dedicated team by your side, you can begin this fulfilling experience knowing that help and guidance are just a call away.
Together, you can make a positive difference in a child’s life, creating a loving and nurturing home that will leave a lasting impact.