‘Paperwork is not my thing but the way I got through the fostering process was to remember why I was doing it. Not only did I want to foster a child but the approval process is necessary to make sure the child in care is safeguarded – most have already gone through a lot of disruption and trauma so it’s important that fostering is done correctly,’ said Tom, 42 from Derby.
So how long does it take to foster and what is the process? On average it can take about nine months from initial expression of interest to being approved, although this process also includes mandatory fostering training.
Once you’ve expressed interest in fostering with GLF, you will need to complete a fostering registration form and a consent form that allows us to do police, medical and financial checks as well as seek professional and personal references. If all is ok you’ll be invited to pre-approval fostering training and assessment process where we can get to know each other better and you can understand the commitment that fostering entails. This will include visiting your home and attending training courses that have a time commitment of approximately 5 hours a month.
If we both want to move forward with the process at that point, we’ll invite you to meet with the GLF fostering panel for final approval before we then discuss with you how best to match you with a child that is most suitable to your personal situation.
Tom said: ‘I know some people can find the vetting process a little intrusive but it really helped me fully understand the commitment I was entering into and made me think through why fostering was so important to me.’
He continued, ‘GLF are also fantastic at guiding you through it all. It feels like a partnership throughout the process so at no point did I feel I was being grilled or analysed. And the end result is totally worth it, my wife and I are currently fostering a toddler and she has really lit up our lives.’