Find out more about being a foster carer

Young boy with a family, looking over his shoulder

Published: Tuesday, 08th May 2018

Drop-in sessions are being held during May to give people interested in fostering the chance to find out more about the opportunities that are currently available.

Foster Care Fortnight 14-27 May

The sessions are being held during Foster Care Fortnight and as part of our ongoing commitment to recruiting foster carers to care for children and young people aged 0–21 who have a diverse range of needs.

We are particularly keen to hear from:

  • people interested in caring for adolescents as we have a number of teenagers in urgent need of a family placement
  • people looking to become short breaks carers to provide respite for children with complex needs and disabilities - this involves weekend breaks and short term periods of respite care for children who live at home with their parents.

Staff and carers are going to be available

Drop-in sessions are being held across the Borders: 

  • Monday 14 May: 2–4pm – Abbey Row, Kelso
  • Tuesday 15 May: 10am–12noon – Eastgate, Peebles
  • Friday 18 May: 10am–12noon – Argus Centre, Selkirk
  • Tuesday 22 May: 10am–12noon – Teviot Medical Centre, Hawick
  • Friday 25 May: 10am–12noon – Early Years Centre, Eyemouth

Councillor Tom Weatherston, Executive Member for Children and Families Social Work

“All children in care need a family they can grow up with who can love them, be ambitious for them and help them achieve their potential. Foster care is considered the best option for children in care and we are always keen to speak to people who would be interested in joining our team of dedicated and committed carers.

“These sessions are an excellent way of finding out more and asking any questions you might have. With both staff and existing foster carers present, you will have the chance to hear both sides of the story.

“Staff can explain about all the benefits of working with the Council’s Family Placement Team, including the payments and allowances that you will be entitled to and details of the training and support that is provided.

“Carers can tell you what motivated them to take up fostering and why they wouldn’t do anything else, giving you a real sense of what it is like to foster on a day to day basis with all the challenges and rewards that caring for a child or young person can bring.”

What do you need to be a foster carer?

  • Foster carers come from all walks of life and may be single or in an enduring partnership.
  • They need to have had experience of looking after or working with children and are able to provide positive parenting with patience and understanding.
  • This will include a genuine interest in children and young people and having an enjoyment of their company.
  • Being patient and having the ability to listen, understand and communicate with young people is also important.
  • Many of our foster carers have had previous careers in child or social care, for example, while others have child care experience with children in their own families and communities.

What we provide

Our foster carers are given full training and have access to a team of specialist social workers who are on hand to provide support. They are also paid an allowance to cover costs, a weekly fee and receive a retainer for up to eight weeks when they are without a placement. They need to be in reasonable health and in settled circumstances.

Thorough checks are undertaken and a full assessment as to their suitability is carried out, including a preparatory training course.

More information

If you believe that you have got the skills and dedication needed to give a child a loving home, now is the time to find out more about fostering.

If you can’t make it to one of the drop-in sessions, you can contact the Family Placement Team on 01896 662799. Information is also available on our website.