Here at Ideal Fostering, we value diversity as this promotes new ways of thinking and a greater understanding of need. Once you have expressed an interest in fostering; your suitability to care for children and young people will be assessed. As part of this thorough process we provide training to help you consider your own strengths and skills. The pre approval training course (skills to foster) is mandatory and any further training is undertaken following your approval.
At this stage we will answer any queries you have and can provide you with some initial information on Ideal fostering and fostering in general. We will also ask some general information about you, your household and your family. If you are interested we will arrange an initial visit.
During this stage someone from our agency will visit you to talk further about your household and family. During the initial screening assessment you will also talk about your work/care experience and your motivation to foster. If you are successful, you will move on to the next stage.
Mandatory Checks are sought during Stage 1 of the fostering assessment process. These include DBS check, Local Authority check and Medical check. You will be placed on a Stage One assessment if any of the above could cause concern and we will await the outcome of these checks before the full fostering assessment can begin.
If there are no concerns regarding health or police checks, you may be taken straight to a Stage Two assessment. All of the Stage One information will still be gathered however this can be done concurrently. During a Stage Two assessment, a qualified social worker will meet with you and your family in order to complete a detailed assessment (Form F) on your suitability to foster. This process requires patience and full co-operation to ensure you feel confident and supported by your assessor.
The Stage Two process could take up to 12 weeks.
Once your Form F assessment is complete, along with your assessor, you will attend the fostering panel which is made up of different professionals from health, education and social work backgrounds. They will read and discuss your assessment and may ask some questions to clarify any information. The panel will make a recommendation to Ideal Fostering regarding whether you should be approved as a foster carer(s) or whether the assessment should be deferred to the next panel meeting if more information is needed.
Within two weeks of attending the panel meeting, the Agency Decision Maker will write to you to confirm whether he agrees with the panel's recommendation. It is at this point that you will be approved as a foster carer for Ideal Fostering. You will be allocated a supervising social worker who will work with you and support you through your fostering journey.