The Fostering Assessment Process |


DawnFoster Carer since 2005

...I don't know why I didn't do this years ago, fostering is a rewarding, worthwhile opportunity and a fantastic career move... The staff are always helpful and supportive, only a phone call away 24/7, 365 days a year…

The Fostering Assessment Process

The process of becoming a foster carer is a thorough and robust process which will bring your strengths and abilities to the fore as well as ensuring we match you with children and young people who can most benefit from the skills and experience your family has to offer.



If from the information you have read you would like to continue we will arrange for a Social Worker to visit you at your home. This visit will be an opportunity to discuss your experiences and availability and for you to find out more about the fostering task including the types of fostering placements referred to the organisation.



Following this visit, if we are both in agreement, you will be invited to attend the next available “Skills to Foster” course. “Skills to Foster” is a training course designed to give you an insight into all aspects of the fostering task. It will also help you and the organisation make an informed decision as to whether fostering is right for you and your family.



The next stage is completing an assessment which is written up using the British Association for Adoption and Fostering Form F, which is used by most fostering agencies for this purpose. A Social Worker will visit you at your home for a series of meetings to talk with you and other members of your family about your household and lifestyle.

The Next Stage



As part of the process the organisation will carry out a series of references and checks such as medicals, DBS checks, work and personal references. On completion of the assessment process a report will be presented to the Fostering Panel who will make a recommendation to the Agency Decision Maker for a decision.

What Do You Need to Foster?

  • A spare bedroom.
  • Experience of interacting with children and young people.
  • If in a relationship, you will need to show that it is stable and settled.
  • A caring personality, the time and energy to devote to a child.
  • Be over 21 years of age. There is no upper age limit as long as you are physically and mentally fit.
  • No serious criminal convictions. If you have been convicted of any violent or serious crimes against children or young people, you will not be able to proceed any further. However, some convictions may not discount you and should be disclosed at the beginning of the assessment process.
  • A good level of verbal and written English.
  • A commitment to the assessment process which builds a picture of your history and life experience.

Our Support for Foster Parents

Fostering Options are committed to providing our foster carers with a support service that is accessible and effective. Foster Carers within the organisation can expect:

    • Named Supervising Social Workers – Once approved you will receive ongoing support from a named qualified and experienced Social Worker.
    • Induction Training Programme - Following your approval you will be invited to attend a 'Foundation Course' which will give you further advice and training to prepare you for your placement.
    • ​TSD Standards – Support to achieve a national qualification designed specifically for new foster carers over your first year of fostering.
    • Supervision Meetings – Supervision meetings usually take place at your home on a monthly basis, although this can be increased if needed.
    • Support Groups – These meetings provide opportunities to meet with other foster carers and share their experiences as well as hearing from Social Workers of any developments in the organisation and the wider world of fostering.
    • ​Education Consultants – Access to consultants who are available to support children and young people’s education.
    • ​Therapeutic Service – Access to our Therapeutic Service providing specific support to foster carers at times of stress.
    • Training – Each foster carer has an Individual Development Plan; your Supervising Social Worker will complete this with you and identify your specific training and development needs.
    • ​Support to Foster Carers
    • Telephone Support – Access to telephone support is available to all foster carers during working hours. This could be available through the local office or directly through mobile phone access. There is always someone at the end of the phone to offer support.
    • Out of Hours Service – A telephone advice line is available outside of working hours 365 days a year.
    • Financial Support – Regular payments exceeding the Fostering Network Payment Guidelines are made to each fostering household with a placement.
    • Respite – Foster carers will be entitled to respite in line with the child’s Care Plan.
    • Individual membership to Fostering Network – This allows foster carers access to the services provided by this recognised body.

Be Part of Fostering Options' Fostering Family 

Fostering Options is an established and progressive organisation committed to delivering a high quality service to children, young people, foster carers and local authorities across the South and West Midlands

We work in partnership with all the local authorities in the region to offer a wide range of fostering placements for children and young people to meet their individual needs.​

Fostering Options

As an existing foster carer it is important that you work with a company that is able to fully support both the children and foster carers. A lot of carers from Local Authorities and other Agencies come to us and feel that there could be more done for themselves and the looked after children.

Get More Information About Fostering With Us