Fostering is a worthwhile and rewarding commitment but by no means an easy one. Fostering children and young people takes special skills and characteristics as well as a living situation which is adaptable enough to take on another dependent. If you are considering fostering then you should be encouraged by your intentions. However, before you go any further there are certain questions you may want to think about. Check out these Questions To Ask Yourself If You Are Considering Fostering.
Are Your Ready?
Children and young people who require foster care come from a variety of backgrounds and may not be immediately responsive upon their move to a new home. You need to have a real passion to want to help young people to be able to foster. However, many people who foster take to the commitment and find it a very rewarding experience which results in an even more loving home. Another factor to consider is the fact that many foster situations end with the desired result being the child returning to their birth family.
How Flexible is Your Work/Social Life?
Flexibility is key to fostering. You will be required to attend training and meetings, ensure the child has all the support they need and adapt to all kinds of situations. If your work and social commitments are too rigid you might find it difficult.
Is Your Family Ready to be a Foster Family?
Fostering is a commitment for the whole family. Before you begin to go through the foster process you should have a full and frank conversation with all members of your family and ensure they are fully aware of what to expect from the arrangement.
Do You Have a Bigger Enough Home?
You will also require the physical room for another family member in your home. When thinking about this you should consider an extra person in the bathroom, around the kitchen table and sitting in the living room.
Is Yours or Your Partners Employment Secure?
The commitment of taking on an extra dependent means that you need to be confident that your financial situation is secure enough in the medium to long term. Are you willing to sacrifice a percentage of your wages for such a period of time and will your employer be understanding about your change in circumstance.
Do You Consider Yourself a Healthy Role Model?
There are so many aspects to fostering but one of the most important is to provide the child or young person with sound advice and guidance as well as love and support. You have to know you are capable of this before taking on the responsibility.
Do You Have the Spare Time Required for Foster Situations?
As mentioned above, it is vital you can spare the time to provide the support needed, attend the meetings and trainings which may be required and fulfil any other commitments which may be necessary.
If you are still unsure about whether you can commit to fostering you may want to read this fostering Q&A.