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Everything you need to know about becoming a foster carer in the UK

Have you been considering fostering for a while but are unsure of exactly how to become a foster carer? We understand, there are many myths and misinformation surrounding fostering and we have written this blog post to share some facts. We are a growing independent fostering agency in the West Midlands and we are looking for more caring and committed people to join our team. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about becoming a foster carer and joining our agency.

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3 benefits of spending time in nature for children and families – Healthy Bodies = Happy Minds

This year we have launched something very exciting here at Focus Foster Care. As of 2022, all of our approved foster carers will receive an annual membership to either the National Trust or English Heritage. Whether you have been fostering with us right from the start, or hope to join our fostering team in the future, if you are an approved Focus foster carer, this is a gift to you.

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How to talk about internet safety with children and young people – Safer Internet Day 2022

This year Safer Internet Day will take place on February 8th. Safer Internet Day is a day to raise awareness of internet safety and to provide children and adults with information on how to remain safe in the online world. The theme for 2022 is ‘All fun and games? Exploring respect and relationships online’. 

Safer internet day is celebrated in over 100 different countries and is coordinated here in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre. The purpose of the annual Safer Internet Day is to raise awareness of the dangers of the internet and encourage people of all ages to navigate the digital world responsibly, respectfully and creatively. To add to this year’s conversation, we are sharing tips on how you can discuss internet safety with the children and young people in your care.

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Fostering for the first time with Focus Foster Care – an interview with our newest foster carer

Fostering is so much more than just a job. Foster carers have one of the most challenging yet rewarding careers there is, they care and love children providing safety and security while long term plans can be explored and secured for them. Fostering is a career like no other and this year there continues to be an urgent need for more foster carers in the UK.

A common remark we hear from our foster carers is that they wanted to foster for years before they decided to apply. At a time when there are not enough foster carers for all of the children in need of a foster family, if you want to foster then do not delay. In this post we have an interview with our newest foster carer. Lindsay is a first time foster carer and has kindly shared her experience of fostering since she joined our independent fostering agency in 2021.

If you want to foster in 2022, take the first step and get in touch with the team here at our West Midlands based independent fostering agency. In six months time you could be just like Lindsay, working hard in a career you love and positively changing the life of a child in need.

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Why do children need foster care? – 9 common reasons why children need to be fostered

Every child is different and each child and young person in foster care has their own unique story. There are several reasons why children need foster care and no family circumstances are exactly the same.

Fostering is a rewarding career but it also comes with its challenges, many of which can stem from the reasons why the child needed foster care in the first place. If you are considering becoming a foster carer, it would be beneficial to know and have an understanding of some of the most common reasons children enter the care system. A child’s presentation and the way they respond to life in a foster family can often be influenced by their past experiences of family life.

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Sons and Daughters Month – An interview with a foster carer and her children

It is The Fostering Network Sons and Daughters Month. Throughout the month of October, The Fostering network aims to shine a light on the children of foster carers and show appreciation for the role they play in helping looked after children to feel at home and happy in their foster family.

Being the child of a foster carer is not always easy. Children are asked to share not only their parents, but their home, their toys, their family and their lives with someone they have never met before. Happy foster families need all family members to be willing and eager participants in the fostering journey. Children of foster carers can play just an important role in looked after children’s lives as their foster carers do.

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5 reasons to foster in later life

The minimum age to become a foster carer in the UK is 21 years old. However, there is no maximum age limit for people wanting to foster a child. If you are interested in fostering, and are fit and healthy, no matter what your age you are never too old to get in touch with us.

A Government study in 2020 found that the majority of foster carers in England between 2019 and 2020 were over 50 years old. The study found that of the 71,150 approved foster carers, 65% were over 50 years of age and 25% were over 60. If you want to foster but you think it’s just a job for the younger generations, these statistics show that you are not too old after all. In fact, if you decide to foster later on in your life you will be in the majority.

Fostering is more than a career, it is giving your home, your time and your love to vulnerable children and young people in need. You can be an excellent foster carer at twenty five but people in their sixties and seventies still have a lot to offer and can make fantastic foster carers too.

Are you considering becoming a foster carer but feel like your age is holding you back? Keep reading to learn why you should become a foster carer in later life.

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Celebrating children in foster care at the end of the school term.

The academic year has come to an end and what a school year it has been. The summer holidays are here at last and we want to take this opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate all the achievements of some of our young people over the last year.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this school year has been like no other; home schooling, covid tests, class bubbles isolating and older children having to wear masks in school. It has been a challenging school year for all children but for young people in foster care it has been even more unsettling and difficult.

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Tips for looking after your mental wellbeing as a foster carer

Foster carers do an amazing job of looking after children and young people. A good foster carer will be as committed to the children in their care as much on the good days as they are on the challenging days. Foster carers work hard to help vulnerable children to heal and move on from previous trauma, they are a strong and stable presence in the lives of children who need to know there is a caring adult in their life who will always support them, no matter what. Foster carers spend a lot of time and energy looking out for the mental wellbeing and happiness of the children in their care – but who is looking after the foster carers?

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How to support your local community

Supporting the local community is something many of us have been thinking about a lot more than usual since March 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic has reignited a sense of community that was starting to disappear from modern society and this is one of the few benefits to come from this difficult past year. Neighbours started to talk more, healthy people offered to do shopping for the vulnerable, we started to smile and say hello to strangers in the street and when we asked people how they were doing we stopped to really listen. Just because we are now on the roadmap out of the pandemic and back to a new version of normal life, that does not mean we need to leave this reignited community spirit behind too. If you want to help out in your local community and support vulnerable families and people in need, we have put together this list of ideas to help you get started.

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