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Fostering process

Becoming a foster carer might seem daunting, but you can rely on our support throughout the process.

How it works

As a small agency, we are like a family and our team is happy to hold your hand at every stage of the fostering journey. And that’s from the minute you pick up the phone to chat to us to the day you’re approved as an ACS carer. Throughout your fostering career with us, the ACS team will listen, support and and encourage you in being the best foster carer you can be.

There are six stages to becoming a foster carer and, depending on your circumstances, the process can take about five months. This may sound like a long time, but it’s vital that you’re given all the information you need, that you know what to expect and that you understand what fostering means for you.

The process involves us getting to know you and your family and looking at what kind of placements would suit you. This means that we can offer you the right training and support once your application is successful.

To find out more about fostering and the enduring difference you could make to a child’s life, call us on 0800 917 7937 or fill in our online enquiry form and we’ll get back to you.

  • 1


    First, you need to let us know that you are interested in fostering. To do that you can call us on 0800 917 7937 or fill in our online enquiry form and one of our team will get back to you.

  • 2

    Home visit

    A fostering advisor will visit you at home. They will discuss with you how we at ACS work with our carers and what support we offer you. If you have any questions, please ask away – our advisor is always more than happy to help. After this visit, you should receive a formal application form.

  • 3

    Preparation course

    Next you will be invited to attend a four-day fostering preparation course. Here, we hope to answer more of your questions. You will be given a deeper understanding of what fostering involves and helped to anticipate the kind of situations you may find yourself in as a foster carer. You will also meet other potential foster carers going through the same assessment journey.

  • 4

    Fostering assessment

    When your application has been recieved, one of our social workers will be in touch to start your fostering assessment. They'll visit you eight or ten times to learn more about you and your family. Any relevant skills and experience that you have will be noted. This information will then be put into what is called a Form F report application form.

  • 5


    Once your assessment is complete, and you are happy will all the contents of the assessment, then your information will be submitted to a fostering panel. They make a recommendation to a Foster Care Associates manager, who makes the final decision on your application.

  • 6

    Fostering with us

    Once you’ve been approved, you’re ready to start fostering with us! We’ll actively promote you to your local authority and match a child or young person to your experience and preferences. We will continue to offer you the support and training you need throughout your career with us.

Get in touch
  • Ready to take the first step to becoming a foster carer or want some more information? Fill out the form and one of our friendly fostering advisors will be more than happy to help.

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