Do I need a spare room to foster?

Every foster child must have their own room.

This is a legal requirement everywhere in the UK.  The only exception is that same sex siblings maybe allowed to share.

As a foster parent therefore, you must have at least one spare room in your home.

Why is a spare room important?

It’s partly to do with safeguarding and privacy for a foster child, partly because the spare room plays a big and important role in their fostering experience.

Many of the children we care for have experienced some difficulties due to their past and all are now living with a new family that isn't their own, with different routines and lifestyles.  A room of their own provides their very own space, which provides them with comfort, security and somewhere they can be themselves, away from the eyes of everyone else.

It’s also useful for foster parents too, because it allows them to set important boundaries, including bedtime.

What do you need to put in the room?

As a minimum, the room must be safe, secure and big enough to take a single bed, wardrobe, chest of drawers and a chair.  After that it’s up to you, but most foster parents go out of their way to make sure the room is specially comfortable and welcoming.

This might mean adding bookshelves, desks or posters, for example, or painting it in bright colours. All of this can be done quite cheaply without breaking the bank!

The best results of all come if you involve the child in decorating the room which can be a great bonding experience. They’ll see you value their opinions and the room will truly become their own!

Finance & Allowances

Visit our financial calculator to see how much you could earn as a foster parent for ACS.

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Types of fostering

At ACS we offer a wide range of placement types to meet the needs of the children we care for.

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Why not turn your spare room into a foster child’s bedroom?

Whether you’re ready to start your journey or just want to chat to an expert, we're here to talk.



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Frequently asked questions

Who can apply to become a foster parent?

Just about anyone! It takes skills that can’t be taught – like patience, compassion, empathy and being able to put a child’s needs before your own. There are, however, some practical considerations. 

Do I need any experience to become a foster parent?

You’ll need to be able to offer the young person or persons in your care the security and continuity they need – as well as supporting their specific religious and cultural needs. You’ll need to provide with them a stable, nurturing family home. You don’t need any qualifications necessarily, but some experience in looking after children can be helpful, but not essential. This could be your own children, within your extended family, or in a childcare setting. Perhaps you were brought up in care yourself and understand what it is like. Just ask one our friendly team members if you’re not sure, they are always happy to answer any questions you may have.

Fostering isn’t always easy, but it’s incredibly rewarding. And with our 24/7 package of training and support, we’re here for you every step of the way.

Are there any criteria I have to meet?

In order to foster, you must be over 21 years old, have a spare bedroom and have time in your life to dedicate to a child who need it.

Why choose ACS?