Fostering is a demanding task. We will make sure you are trained to handle all the legal and day-to-day requirements of foster care. We will also give you training to deal with the more challenging moments that will occur.
All foster carers get support and supervision so you are never left to muddle through. New foster carers get extra support because starting to foster has a steep learning curve. For the first year you will be paired up with an experienced foster carer so there is always someone who can offer advice or information. We expect foster carers to come to a monthly forum meeting where information is passed on and everyone in the fostering team can get to know each other better. You will see your social worker every two months for supervision, and whenever you need to for support and advice. Support is also available from other foster carers, formally and informally. Denbighshire foster carers have set up their own association, run by and for foster carers, and all foster carers are automatically a member.
“Payment for Skills”
All foster carers get a weekly fostering allowance for each child placed with them. This is to cover expenses incurred. In April 2005, Denbighshire County Council launched a new career scheme for foster carers, called “Payment for Skills”. Under this scheme, some foster carers receive a fee for their work in addition to the weekly fostering allowance.
Applicants get detailed information about fostering, and training in how to work with the local authority team, how to make sure everyone in the foster family is safe, making sense of children’s behaviour and preparing a child (and yourself) for when the child leaves you.
The “Skills to Foster” training course covers many of these issues and is mandatory for applicants to attend. The courses are 6 sessions which usually run over a 3 day period.
Primary foster carers
This level means newly approved foster carers get more intensive support and training for the initial period of their work with fostered children. After six months, the foster carers have their first review and may be ready for Tier 1. As a primary foster care, you get a weekly allowance to cover costs but you are not paid a fee for your work.
All Tier 1 foster carers get training in how to promote education, health, wellbeing and identity and what to do in a crisis. In addition, foster carers can ask to start the NVQ 3, “Health and social care – Children’s Pathway”. On Tier 1, foster carers receive an allowance and a fee.
Tiers 2 and 3
If you are willing and available to foster children and young people in general (some people choose only to foster a child they already know), you can apply to move to Tiers 2 and 3. These have further training requirements, higher fees and (especially at Tier 3) an expectation that you will start supporting new foster carers and help develop fostering policy within the local authority.
If you decide to apply to foster, we will give you a full copy of this scheme, including the current allowances and fees.
If you'd like to find out more about fostering, ring our Free Phone enquiry line on 0800 7313215.