Who Can Foster? - Changing Futures Fostering

Who Can Foster?

  • What are some of the formal requirements for becoming a foster parent?
  • What qualities, skills & values do you need to have?
  • What else do you need to thinkabout when becoming a foster parent?


Foster parents care deeply about children. You help laugh with, comfort and inspire young people. You give them love. You help them grow and achieve the things that matter to them. You put the time in to make this happen and to make young people feel welcome, wanted and safe.

Young people need foster parents with the values, beliefs and attitudes that will make them superb parents for children in care.

As well as having the right values and personal qualities, you need to:

  • Be 21 or older
  • Have at least one spare bedroom (or the ability to create a spare bedroom).
  • Drive or have easy, consistent access to a car
  • Live in or fairly near Middlesbrough, Stockton, Darlington, Hartlepool, Redcar, Newcastle, Durham, Sunderland and Washington
  • Be a British Citizen or have indefinite leave to remain

Qualities, skills and values of foster parents:

Some of the qualities, skills and values you really need to foster are:

  • Compassion You can empathise and understand the experiences and emotions of children in care. We give you training so that you understand some of the reasons why children might be feeling and presenting themselves or their emotions in certain ways, but that ability to empathise and show compassion needs to be an existing skill.
  • Patience everyone needs some patience and understanding. Children may need time to adjust and trust, especially when they first enter their new home, but they also need appropriate boundaries too.
  • Flexibility No two days are the same with fostering, and no two children are the same. You’ll need to be adaptable and able to cope with different situations. You’ll also need to be able to accommodate the needs of children from a range of backgrounds and with different life experiences.
  • Resilience Foster parenting is super parenting. As well as being really rewarding, it can be emotionally demanding. You’ll need to be able to overcome challenges and work through the tough times, supported by our fostering community.
  • Communication Being able to build relationships with a broad range of people, including children, birth families, social workers, other foster parents, and our staff, is an essential part of fostering a child. Our training helps you know how to tailor your communication to children who might have experienced trauma.
  • Commitment Whether or not you are a short break / short-term foster carer or parent, or you go into fostering and have longer-term placements, you’ll need to be committed to doing your best to provide a warm, safe, loving home for children and to meet their needs.

Some other things to think about:

  • Your health how fit and well are you, and will you be in the future? Lots of people do foster with some health issues, but you and we need to be sure they won’t stop you from fostering effectively.
  • The money and your job usually, the main foster parent doesn’t work, but sometimes people work part-time, and the foster or one member of the household works. Our fostering fees help you to focus on fostering full-time, and there are lots of tax benefits. You need to be sure you’re in the right place financially to foster.
  • Your past everyone has things that happen in life, and sometimes this means a criminal record. We always look at everyone’s specific situation.
  • Your experiences including the skills you’ve gained through your life as a result of experiences and any experience you’ve had with children and young people. This could be through work, volunteering, looking after or interacting with children in your wider family or at home.


You can think about whether fostering might work for you financially here.

Who Can Foster by Changing Futures Fostering

We’re completely transparent about our fee’s and support offer to our foster parents.

Our support package was created in collaboration with foster parents. We found out from those with the most lived experience what can our Agency do to make the fostering experience the best it can be.

Find out more here.

Unlike other agency’s we train all our foster parents in a therapeutic parenting approach. Learn more about why that it’s important here.

Fostering is a wonderful and life changing commitment, having lots of questions is to be expected. Find our FAQ’s here

Get in touch!

 If youre thinking about fostering or just wanted to see if it is right for you, then we would love you to get in touch! Our friendly team are here to answer any questions you may have.

 Click here to contact us at Changing Futures Fostering!

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