For many people thinking about becoming a foster carer, there are a number of questions they have before setting off on that journey. Some of these could include if you can foster as a single parent, what the fostering requirements are or if you can foster if you have pets.
However, one of the main questions that we are asked frequently is if you can choose who you foster. This is as families want to try and be as prepared as they can before they take on their first child, and sometimes will have preferences on which children they will foster in their home.
An important part of fostering is, of course, making sure there is the right fit between yourselves, your family and the foster child as it is crucial that they feel settled quickly in your home. This is why we ask as many questions as we can when we onboard a new family to understand their circumstances and their feasibility to foster.
There is a diverse range of children in the foster care system who vary in age, ethnicity, race and religion who all need to find support in a loving and caring environment. Although we will take preferences into account during the onboarding process, we ask that our families treat each case with an open mind – however, we always stress that they don’t have to accept each case if they feel they cannot provide adequate support.
Many foster parents are also keen to ask if you can choose the age of the foster child, and while it’s important to know that you can’t pick the age of the foster child, it is possible to register a preference.
Becoming a foster parent, and in fact the whole fostering process, is about finding the right match. How your family may fit in with the child is discussed at length.
All foster carers are approved to look after children either from birth to 18-years-old, or from five to 18-years-old - along with being approved to care for both genders.
We understand that the preference maybe due to a number of family circumstances on the foster carers’ side, but it’s important to highlight if payment is only made when you have a child in placement, then the bigger the age range you can have then the more beneficial it would be for the foster carer. Limiting which ages you want to accept may limit the time until a placement can be made.
In short, yes.
A foster family is able to foster more than one child at a time. This can either be by fostering sibling groups – which is when children are from the same biological family. This is to help create consistency and comfort for the children who are within the care system.
There is also the chance to take on more than one foster child simultaneously, however this isn’t as common. Assessments will need to be done beforehand to ensure that the child that is in care will be able to cope with a new child coming into their environment, and vice versa.
Taking on a foster child alongside your own biological child is also common, however there will be the need for further assessments to ensure the fit is right for all.
If you’ve got any questions or would like to find out more about fostering with Capstone, fill out the form below.
An experienced fostering advisor from your local area will then be in touch.