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Fostering - Explained

  • The Fostering Process Explained
    1. Initial Enquiry Once a prospective foster carer has enquired, the Carer Recruitment Team will contact the applicant to discuss their suitability and desire to foster. ​ 2. Home Visit ​ If appropriate a home visit will be arranged. The visit is called an initial visit and will be a two way discussion between the dedicated social worker and the applicant. ​ 3. Assessment ​ If appropriate, we will assign a qualified social worker to undertake a comprehensive assessment with the prospective foster carer and their family. They will produce a report which we refer to as an Assessment. This covers: ​ • Individual profiles of applicants • Relationships and partnerships • Applicants’ support network • Children in the household • Other adult members of the household • Description of family life • Valuing diversity • Parenting capacity ​ The social worker will visit the home a minimum of eight visits to spend time working with the applicants on their assessment. The assessment is a joint project and will require full participation from applicants and their family. A minimum of three personal referees will be required who will be visited by a social worker. As part of the assessment process, potential carers will be required to attend a training course called Skills to Foster. During the assessment, our staff will also carry out a variety of statutory checks (stage 1) which are completed concurrently with your home visits (stage 2). ​ • Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check • Local Authority checks • Current or previous fostering organisation reference • School/health visitor reference (on own child, if appropriate) • Medical reports • Current employment reference • References from all previous employment involving children and vulnerable adults • Personal references from at least three people who will also be visited by a social worker • Overseas checks where appropriate • A Health and Safety inspection will also be carried out by the agency’s staff • Ex-partners and children of an appropriate age from previous relationships will be interviewed ​ 4. Panel ​ Once the assessment is completed the applicants will have the opportunity to read and discuss possible amendments to the report. This report will then be presented to the fostering panel. Prospective foster carers and the social worker completing the assessment must be in attendance at the fostering panel. The fostering panel is made up of a variety of professionals and independent members, who have the appropriate qualifications and experience to serve as panel members. ​ 5. Approval ​ The panel members make recommendations re approval, with the final decision being made by the Agency Decision Maker (ADM). Upon approval as a foster carer we will advise you in writing and allocate a supervising social worker to support the foster carer in their fostering task. Compass will advise local authorities of the approved foster carer’s availability.
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