Fostering is a challenge, it takes work, patience, and love, but it is also incredibly rewarding - both for the foster parent and the child in care.
If you are looking for a career change and considering if becoming a foster parent could be the right fit, then there has never been a better or more urgent time to find out more about fostering. Read on to discover how the skills you already have could help you change a vulnerable child’s life.
Now, more than ever, vulnerable children and young people need loving and safe homes. Over 70,000 children live with almost 56,000 foster families across the UK each day. This is nearly 70% of the 82,170 children in care away from home on any one day in the UK.
There are about 43,905 foster families in England, which means there is an active need for thousands more foster families. Foster care during the pandemic has put even more strain on the system.
During the covid pandemic, the number of children needing foster care rose by 44%, while the number of people choosing to become foster parents decreased by nearly half compared to where the figures were the previous year.
Every child deserves a happy childhood, and, for whatever reason, more and more children are entering the care system desperately in need of a secure home. And each year, tens of thousands of children across the UK need foster parents because they can’t live with their own families.
If you’ve been considering a career in fostering but are unsure if you have the skills or abilities, then don’t worry. We can almost guarantee you do. There are so many job roles that provide you with the ideal transferable job skills to become a foster parent, and the career you already have has most likely provided you with some, if not all, of these.
So, what are some transferable job skills?
Whether you work in IT or healthcare, office management or social work, marketing or childcare, there are skills that you would have naturally picked up that can be transferred to a career in fostering. Skills such as:
- Being a team player
- Understanding what is empathy
- Listening skills
- Ability to adapt to change
- Ability to build relationships with others
- Being able to remain calm
- Communication skills
- A good sense of humour
- Being open-minded
- Being emotionally available
A lot of these skills are innate to so many people, and being a foster parent is an amazing way to put them into practice. And don’t forget, when you apply to become a foster parent, you’ll receive dedicated and ongoing support as well as foster training to help you deal with any situation.
Even if you’re unsure if you want to quit your current job to take on fostering as a full-time role, there are still times when it is doable to work and foster. If this is something that is concerning you, then just get in touch and we can have a chat about it.
Now you know just what it takes to be a foster parent and the skills you need to become a wonderful foster parent, let’s look at some of the many benefits of fostering. For both you and your foster child.
Children go into care because their parents cannot take care of them, and this can be due to a number of factors, including abuse and neglect. By becoming a foster parent you’ll be giving children the chance to be part of a secure and stable family environment, and help them have a break from potentially very difficult home circumstances. As a foster parent, you will be opening a child’s eyes to what a normal life can be like, simply by providing a safe, caring, and secure home.
You will also have the opportunity to grow yourself by stepping out of your comfort zone because while fostering has so many benefits for the young people you’ll be helping, there are also benefits for you.
You’ll have the chance to embrace the challenge of helping children grow and develop themselves, putting your skills to the test, and, ultimately, growing and developing yourself.
While fostering allowances aren’t the main reason to become a foster parent, they allow you to turn fostering into a life-changing new career, taking away the financial pressure and stress and allowing you to provide for your foster child while earning a great income. And, you’ll also have access to a wealth of training and development from a network of fostering professionals. This allows you to grow within your fostering career, just like any other career.
You will also be eligible for our many rewards and benefits, as well as respite breaks, bonuses, tax exemptions, and tax relief.
Let’s not forget, when you become a foster parent, the biggest benefit you will get comes from the amazing and positive difference you will make in the life of a vulnerable child or young person. There is no reward or benefit greater than that.
Make a difference to a young life
If you’re ready to take the next steps and find out more about fostering, or even apply to become a foster parent, then we would love to hear from you. Get in touch today and our friendly team will talk you through any questions you might have.