Steps to becoming a Havering foster carer

There are eight steps divided over two stages to become a foster carer and the average time taken is four to six months for first time carers.

In steps one to four we get to know you, undertake necessary background checks and offer preparation training.

In steps five to eight we formally asses you over a series of visits and continue to prepare you to become a successful foster carer.

Step one

You make an initial enquiry to us to find out more about fostering in Havering.

You can do this by phoning us, emailing us, applying online or attending an information session.

We will provide you with information and establish if fostering might be right for you and your family.

Step two

We will arrange a home visit. We will talk to you in more detail about fostering and if it’s right for you.

Step three

After this meeting and if we all agree we’d like to continue, we will ask your permission to carry out the checks needed to be able to work with children.

This includes police, health and other checks with the council where you live.

You will also be invited to attend preparation training called 'Skills to Foster'.

Step four

After the 'Skills to Foster' training you will be invited by the trainers from the group to a feedback meeting.

Together we decide if moving to the next stage is right for you.

If it is, we ask you to formally apply to become a foster carer, entering stage two of the process.

Step five

In stage two we undertake a home study with you and members of your household.

A social worker will meet you several times and explore in detail your motivation for fostering and how your experiences will help you look after a child/young person.

We will also need to meet with some of your friends and family to see how they can support you as a foster carer.

Step six

When the home study is complete, a report will be written by your social worker and shared with you.

The report is then presented to the Havering Fostering and Adoption Panel.

The panel is an independent group of people who decide whether or not to recommend that you become a foster carer.

Step seven

If all goes well, you will be recommended by the panel and approved by us as a Havering foster carer.

Step eight

As a Havering foster carer you will be allocated a fostering social worker who will be there to offer you continuous support, advice, training and supervision.

From this point onwards we may place a child/young person with you.

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