Thinking About Fostering? Have a Look at AFA’s Top Ten Foster Carer Qualities

  1. Experience of Living or Working with Children – You don’t need to have children of you own, but you do need experience in looking after or working with children and a genuine commitment to helping children change their lives for the better.
  2. Resilience and Determination – Helping a child to reach their full potential is amazingly rewarding but it can also be incredibly challenging and frustrating at times, and you will need to be resilient and determined to see things through. And a good sense of humour helps too.
  3. Warmth, Openness and Honesty – As a foster carer you will need to provide a warm, caring and supportive environment where children feel welcome and safe. You will also need to be able to work openly and honestly with agencies and professionals, from the start of your assessment and throughout your fostering career.
  4. A Good Team Player – Foster carers work as part of a team to support a child and you will need to be able to listen and communicate effectively, and accept advice and support and work to agreed plans.
  5. Willingness to Learn – Foster carers need to develop their childcare knowledge and skills to help them provide the best possible care for children. You will need to be open to learning by attending regular training and support groups and using professional supervision to reflect on and discuss your approach to a child’s care.
  6. Physical Space – You don’t need to have a big house, but you do need to have a spare bedroom as foster children must have their own room.
  7. Support Networks – Fostering is a demanding and difficult job. In addition to the support that we will give you, it is important that you have emotional and practical support available from those around you.
  8. Flexibility – Foster carers have to be very flexible and you will need to be able to adapt your lifestyle, routines and commitments to meet the needs of children.
  9. Organised and Professional – Foster carers are professional. They attend meetings, complete reports and make sure there is a written record of all the important things that happen in the lives of the children they are caring for.
  10. Consistency – You will need to be able to see things from a child’s perspective, to understand and work with the behaviours they may display, and provide stable and consistent care for children who may not have experience this before.

If you think this is you we would love to hear from you, please visit the I’d like to Foster page or click on this link