There are many conceptions in fostering. Some are true while others are false.
Read our myth busters to find out more.
You and your personal history
It does not matter what your background, culture or ethnicity is.
As long as you’re open to educating yourself about others and are non-judgmental.
Every new foster carer will go through a series of checks and assessments when they register their interest, and any disability will be noted.
If you’re capable of taking care of a child and offering a safe and caring home, then your disability will not get in the way of you fostering.
Everyone over 18 in a household will have a police and enhanced DBS check during the initial checking process.
Offences against a child will rule a person out. Violent crime also makes it unlikely you could foster.
However, having a criminal record does not in itself disallow you from fostering.
There is no upper age limit for foster care.
We base our decision on your experience and ability to keep up with the demands of an active child.
If you feel healthy and active enough, then you should get in touch.
Some people also ask about the age limit for foster care because they’re wondering if they’re too young to foster. If this sounds like you, you should get in touch with our team to find out more.
Our only age limit for foster care is that you should be over the age of 21. If you’re over the age of 21 and have a spare room, you’re eligible to become a foster carer.
We are often asked by people whether they’re too old to become foster carers.
Our answer is invariably the same – nobody is too old to foster.
There is no maximum age limit. In fact, life experience can often be a real positive when it comes to caring for a young person who is experiencing a difficult time in their life.
Relationships and sexual orientation
A lot of people wonder if a single person can foster.
You do not have to be married or even in a relationship to become a foster carer.
We're most focused on making sure you’re emotionally prepared for the challenges of fostering.
We welcome single male foster carers who can make excellent role models to the young people that they care for.
You can foster if you're:
- living with your partner
- male or female.
You can be single, married, living together as a couple and be any sexual orientation.
All that matters to us is that you’re passionate about helping others and ready to make a real difference in a young person’s life.
Fostering is a popular path for parents whose children have left home, and they’re looking for a way to help out while filling empty rooms in their home.
However, you do not need to have your own children to be accepted.
If you have any experience working with children, either in a professional or voluntary capacity, this will be beneficial.
If your only experience with kids is taking care of your younger relatives or friend’s children, this is fine too.
We offer a wide range of training and support throughout your fostering journey.
Sexual orientation does not matter at all in the fostering process.
People that are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and other (LGBTQ+) are in no way discriminated against in the process.
Our agency, like so many others, welcomes a diverse range of foster carers and actively encourage LGBTQ+ applicants.
You do not have to be married to become a foster carer.
You could be married, cohabiting or happily single. It does not matter.
We have several single foster carers providing wonderful placements for children and young people across Medway.
Owning your own home is not a must for becoming a foster carer.
It does not matter whether you:
- own your home
- rent from a private landlord
- rent from your local council.
All that we ask is that you have a spare bedroom so that the foster child has a space to make their own.
While it’s true that you need to have a spare bedroom to foster, you do not need a big house.
Money and work
You do not have to be 'well off' to foster children.
As an approved foster carer, you would be paid a fostering allowance. This covers the extra household and general costs of having a young person living with you, and any special expenses involved in their care.
It also rewards your work as a professional foster carer.
This will depend on your circumstances, but we have found employers to be very flexible in these circumstances.
Ideally, you would foster on a full-time basis if you live alone, or one person in the household works full time.
Some more complex placements may ask that a foster carer is not working but we’ll discuss specific needs with each new carer. Becoming a foster carer does not automatically mean having to give up your job.