Your fostering journey
The Swiis fostering journey, from application to placement and beyond, is a robust process all applicants must go through in order to become a fully accredited foster carer:
When we receive your enquiry, a member of the fostering recruitment team will contact you to arrange a suitable time to undertake a telephone questionnaire to gain further information about you and your family, and explain the criteria for applying. Once this has been successfully completed we will send you an information pack and arrange a suitable time for a member of the fostering team to visit you at home.
A member of the fostering team will visit you and your family at home to discuss your reasons for fostering. A report will be put together with recommendations for next steps. If you pass this stage you will be invited to attend the Day 1 Introduction to Fostering training. This will provide you with further clarification about what you can expect as a a foster carer; both the rewards and challenges which you may face. Should you decide that fostering is for you, you will be asked to complete and submit an application form for review.
Swiis will assign you a named, qualified social worker to carry out a fostering assessment with you and your family. This is a joint project and requires full participation from you and your family. As part of this process, a number of statutory checks will be carried out.
As part of your assessment, we will carry out a series of statutory checks, including:
- Enhanced DBS Check
- Local Authority checks
- NSPCC checks
- Ex-partners (except in exceptional circumstances)
- Children from previous relationships
- Reference from current employer/fostering organisation/voluntary work
- School/Health visitor reports for your own children (if appropriate)
- Medical reports
- At least 2 personal references
- References from all previous employment involving children and vulnerable people
- General risk assessment of your home
- Recommendations for improving safety
- Overseas checks (if appropriate)
Either immediately prior to commencing or during your assessment you will be required to attend a 3-day preparation training course. This is part of the assessment process and feedback from trainers will be reviewed as part of your assessment.
Your fostering assessment and the outcome of all your checks will be presented to the Fostering Panel, which includes a combination of professional and independent members. Main carers and secondary carers are required to attend and respond to questions. A recommendation is made on the day by the Fostering Panel.
The final decision rests with the Agency Decision Maker. Once official approval has been given, Swiis will notify you and assign a social worker to you who will visit you at home. All relevant Local Authorities will be made aware of your availability as a foster carer.