We're here to support you
Although it’s very rewarding, fostering also brings challenges. You’ll be faced with unexpected situations and behaviours that will test your patience, and you’ll often have to think on your feet and find answers on the spot. But thanks to our training you’ll be well prepared, and as you grow in experience you’ll take most of this in your stride. That’s not the only way we support you however.
We understand how important it is for you to feel there is someone always available to talk to or to offer expert help and guidance. It means you’ll get far more out of being a foster parent – and children will get more out of the experience too. That’s why we’ve put together a package of support that’s always there for you.
Regular supervision and your own dedicated social worker
Our team are fully trained and qualified social work professionals with a wide range of experience of fostering and all it involves. We’ll allocate one to you and they’ll be with you throughout, visiting you regularly to monitor progress both yours and your foster children. We will provide any extra help you might need. You can also call us at any time of the day or night, every day of the year, so there’s open and regular communication to help you foster successfully.
Highly qualified local teams
Each of our local offices has its own expert team, including social workers, trainers, administrative support and management, all working hard to create a welcoming and supportive culture. Backed up with a wider expertise across ACS, we’re on hand for every need. You can call us anytime and you are always welcome to pop in to our offices.
Peer group meetings
Most foster parents find it’s really helpful to meet up with others – this is especially important when caring for child of different culture or faith. It’s a chance to share experiences, learn from others and build a wider circle of support. We hold regular group ‘get togethers’ and you’re encouraged to attend as many as possible.
Activities and events for everyone
We have a packed calendar of activities that are open to you and your family, giving everyone a chance to get together and take part. These include games, sports and fun days out as well as charity events and activities to celebrate religious and other festivals.
We have excellent links with local mosques, synagogues, churches and other key community groups, all of which get involved and support what we’re doing.
Free membership of FosterTalk
FosterTalk is an independent organisation which represents and supports everyone involved in fostering. When you’re a member you get loads of benefits, including insurance, free advice and helplines as well as special member discounts on goods and services. There’s even a regular magazine to keep you in touch with what’s happening in fostering.
Great rewards and benefits for foster parents
What do I need 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 –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.
What training will I receive to be able to foster?
You will be invited to attend 'Skills to Foster' training, you must complete this course, usually 3 days before we can take your assessment to panel. Once approved we will also provide you with an induction to help you get to know ACS more fully, help you to know what you need to do as a foster parent and help you to learn our procedures and systems. We are there to help you every step of the way as a new foster parent and beyond.
What if I'm already a foster parent and wish to transfer?
We welcome experienced foster parents to ACS. Many people transfer to us, as they wish to foster with a faith based agency, that understands and respects their culture and traditions.
Why choose ACS?
Regular supervision with your very own dedicated social worker
Generous fostering allowance and bonuses
Over 10 languages spoken
Local support where you need it
Small agency with a family feel