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Cheshire East Council Cheshire West and Chester Halton Borough Council Knowsley Council Liverpool Council St Helens Council Warrington Borough Council Wiral Council
A collaborative service for: Cheshire East Council Cheshire West and Chester Halton Borough Council Warrington Borough Council
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Can I foster if…

20 Jun 2024 | News

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Are you thinking about becoming a Foster Carer?

Don’t rule yourself out before you even get started, let us shed some light on some common misconceptions about fostering and the requirements.


✅ Can I foster if… I’m single

Yes. We have plenty of fantastic foster carers who are single. You do not need to be married or in a relationship to foster. During an assessment we look at the people in you life who support you, whether that be family, friends, neighbours or colleagues. We refer to this as your ‘support network’.

✅ Can I foster if… I’m transgender

Yes. Your gender does not in any way determine whether you are suitable to become a Foster Carer.

✅ Can I foster if… I’m gay

Yes. We’re proud to say that many of our wonderful foster carers are part of the LGBT+ community.

✅ Can I foster if… I’m over 60

Yes. We don’t have an upper age limit to become a Foster Carer. The only age limit is that you have to be 21 or older with some life experience. What matters is that you are fit and able to care for a child or young person, so as part of the assessment and throughout your time as a Foster Carer you will be required to undertake a medical with your own GP.

✅  Can I foster if… I don’t have my own children

Yes. You don’t need to have your own children to foster. We’ll look at any relevant experience you have of working with or caring for children, however, a lack of experience won’t necessarily be a barrier either.

✅ Can I foster if… I have a full-time job 

Yes, but it depends on the flexibility of your working role and on the needs of the child or young person you are caring for. What you have to consider is the other demands fostering brings alongside caring for a child such as training and attending meetings.

✅ Can I foster if… I don’t own my own house

Yes. We have lots of Foster Carers who live in rented accommodation. We ask that you discuss your intention to foster with your landlord and that you are able to demonstrate financial stability.

✅ Can I foster if… I have a disability

Yes. Having a disability does not prevent you from becoming a Foster Carer. We’re proud to say we have a number of Foster Carers who have a disability, but you do need to be physically and psychologically fit enough to care for children and young people and meet their needs. We treat all applicants fairly, without prejudice, openly and with respect.

✅ Can I foster if… I can’t drive

Yes. We need our Foster Carers to be able to meet the needs of the child or young person in their care, which can include taking them to and from school, appointments and supervised time with their family. If you can’t drive, you will need to demonstrate your willingness to use good public transport links in your area.

✅ Can I foster if… I have pets

Yes. We understand that pets are part of the family and can be a huge positive to a fostering family. Temperament and behaviour of the pet or pets will be factors we consider and where necessary a professional pet assessment may be required.

✅ Can I foster if… I’m not a British citizen

Yes. We expect that you’re a full time resident in the UK, but British citizenship is not required to be a foster carer in the UK. Our children and young people come from a wide range of backgrounds, so we welcome fostering families from all walks of life.

✅ Can I foster if… English isn’t my first language

Yes. For some of our children, being part of a fostering family where English is not the first language is a benefit to them. However, you will need to be able to communicate with other professionals to help and support a child or young person.

✅ Can I foster if… I practice a religion

Yes. We match children and young people with fostering families who meet their needs – including religious needs – but not all children you care for will practice a religion so we ask that you consider how you feel about alternative religious beliefs to your own or ethical issues that might impact how you care for a child or young person.

✅  Can I foster if… I have a criminal record

A conviction will not necessarily mean you cannot become a foster carer but we would need to carefully consider your application and the circumstances of any offense. We won’t consider anyone who has a conviction against children or conviction for sexual offences. If you do have any cautions or convictions you do need to be open and honest with us as we will obtain an enhanced disclosure and barring check as part of your assessment.

✅ Can I foster if… I serve in the military

Yes. There is nothing to stop you from fostering if you serve in the military. We will explore how you would meet the needs of the child or young person alongside your service, however it may be difficult if you have to relocate for example.

✅ Can I foster if… I don’t live in a big house

Yes. The size of your house will not be a determining factor. Some carers only foster babies who can sleep in a cot in their bedroom, but to care for older children you are required to have a spare room that is big enough for a child or young person to live and be safe in.

Still got questions? Ask us. Make an enquiry or give us a call 03456 460098