How do I foster?

Deciding to foster is a big decision - you've probably been considering it for a while, or thought about it before.

It's unlikely to be something you rush in to, and for good reason, but finding out more or registering your interest means just that. You're not committing to anything by getting in touch, and it's a really great way to help you gage whether or not fostering could be something you'd like to consider further, either now or in the future. 

Regardless of when the right time is for you to foster, the first step is always talking to us via phone or email, by making an enquiry.

If after an initial chat you're happy to pursue fostering further, we can arrange a more detailed chat, which we call an 'Initial Home Visit', though this is currently completed via phone or video call due to Coronavirus. 

Following an initial home visit, we can provide an application form and book you on to our 'Skills to Foster' training course, again completed online at the moment. 

The main part of your application will be around the formal assessment, which will be completed by your assigned Assessing Social Worker, who will work with you throughout the process to complete the form and basic checks, along with any other relevant paperwork.

The final part of the process is 'going to panel'. Your assessment will be sent to the Somerset Foster Panel, who all being well, will then make a recommendation for you to be approved as foster carers. 

After approval, you'll be assigned a dedicated Supervising Social Worker, who will help to support and guide you as you join our fostering community and get ready to welcome your first foster child (or children) to your home, when you will also begin to receive the relevant fees and allowances

To read more about each of these steps in the fostering process, please visit the relevant sections via the main menu. You may also find it useful to download out fostering information booklet, or to look through the videos and information here.

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