The journey to fostering is different for everyone.
It normally takes around 6 months to go through the assessment process, although this largely depends on your personal circumstances. We will do everything we can to make it as straightforward and simple as possible, offering you all the support and guidance you need, every step of the way.
The application process
The application process will help you to decide whether fostering is right for you. It will also give you a better understanding of the role and get you thinking about how fostering will affect your life.
You will complete six stages in your journey to becoming a foster carer:
After registering your interest with us, we will contact you to chat about fostering and help you to think about whether it is right for you. You will also be sent our information pack: ‘Start Your Journey’.
Our Fostering Advisor will visit your home to answer any questions you may have and explain how FFI work with and supports foster carers. If all criteria are met, you will be invited to submit your application pack.
You will need to complete an application form, which gives us detailed information about you and your family, and also requests your consent for us to complete necessary checks and enquiries to determine your suitability to foster. FFI are required to carry out Garda vetting checks, enquiries to Tusla, a medical examination, financial checks, safety check, references and other enquiries as necessary before beginning the full assessment process.
You will be invited to attend a preparation course that will give you a full understanding of the fostering role and get you thinking about how you would react to some of the situations you may find yourself in as a foster carer.
One of our Assessing Social Workers will be in touch to start your fostering assessment. They will visit your home between 6 and 10 times to collect information about you, your family and any skills and experience you have that will help you with fostering. This information will be put together into a full report.
After it has been completed, your Assessment Report will be shared with you and then presented to the local Tusla Foster Care Committee.
Do not worry if the fostering process sounds a little daunting, we are here to support you every step of the way. The most important thing to remember is to be as open and honest as possible, and give answers that you believe in. Be yourself, raise any concerns as quickly as possible and always ask if there is anything that you do not understand or would like more information about.
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