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Frequently Asked Fostering Questions​

We've answered a few of the questions we are frequently asked:

Find out about fostering:

everything you need to know before deciding to become a foster carer

There is a lot to think about when deciding to become a foster carer. We think it’s important that you have as much information about fostering, and the way Greater London Fostering works. If you’re thinking about fostering, you probably have a lot of questions. We’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions from people who are interested in fostering. Have a look through the answers, but if there is anything that hasn’t been answered, simply give us a call on 0208 3478741 or download our guide at the bottom of the page.

Why Should You Join GLF?

There are a lot of fostering agencies, both local and nationwide. It’s really important that you find an agency you feel comfortable with. Your relationship with the fostering agency will be key in supporting the children you foster. So why GLF? We’re one of the UK’s longest established independent fostering agency, with over 20 years of doing what we do. The thing that makes us stand out is our family feel. Everything we do, we do with a strong sense of community. GLF has a clear mission, to improve the lives of children in care, and work harder every day to achieve this.

Who can foster?

There are hundreds of children in London who are need of a foster family, but not enough foster carers. So, who can foster? We think everyone should be able to be a foster carer, as long as you can provide a warm, loving, nurturing and stable home for a child. There isn’t a lot that would stop you from fostering. The only thing we would say you definitely couldn’t foster, if you have a conviction that is sexual or child related. So, as long as you have a spare room, and the time to give, you could be a foster carer. Why not give us a call today to find out more? Or why not download our guide to fostering? It covers questions that frequently come up when people are thinking about becoming foster carers.

Why Do Children Need To Be Fostered

There are many reason why children need to be fostered. Generally it is because the local authority decides that the children’s birth parents are not capable, or should not look after the child. However, it can also be because there is a family emergency that means a birth parent needs some extra help. Each year about 30,000 children come into the care in the UK, most of these are placed in fostering. If you think you could help a child in care, then why not think about fostering.

Our top 5 questions:


Can I foster if I’m working?

Even if you work full time, fostering is still an option. We ask that our foster carers are financially stable without the fostering allowance. Yes, the financial support helps, but it would probably not be enough to replace the money you receive if you work. However you need to be able to demonstrate that your support network can help you support a child. It might also require a level of flexibility and understanding with your employer. Our priority is the safety of the children in care, so we need to know that there will be someone looking after the foster child after school. If this answers your question and you want to find out more about fostering, we’ve got some great blog posts about why being a foster carer is amazing.


Do I have to have a qualification to foster?

You don’t need an official childcare qualification to be a foster carer. We just ask that you have had some experience of looking after children.To top This experience could be through an official qualification and working in a school or nursery for example. It could be raising your own family, babysitting or simply looking after family members. You might not realise how much experience you have of looking after children. During your time as a foster carer, you will be able to gain qualifications which are related to looking after children. At GLF, we have over 150 training courses available, to enable our carers to be the best that they can.


Can I foster if I have pets?

Having pets in a home can be great for a foster child, as they are often naturally drawn to them. In fact, it can be very therapeutic to be in the company of pets. We do however have a few breeds of dogs which we consider to much of a risk – these are dogs that have the ability to lock their jaws. Whatever pet you have, the only other criteria we have is that they are well looked after. We want our foster children to be in a caring, hygienic environment.


Can I foster if I’m gay?

Asking yourself ‘can I foster if I’m gay’? Then the answer is definitely! The LGBTQ+ community is somewhat under represented in fostering. If you are a part of the LGBTQ+ and interested in fostering children, then we would love to hear from you. Your sexuality has no effect on your ability to look after children and be a foster carer. The most important thing from our perspective, is that you can offer a loving home to a child in need. There are many children in London, who are in need of a loving and caring foster family. If you are a part of the LGBTQ+ community and are interested in becoming a foster carer, now is the time to start your journey.


Can I foster if I’m single?

You don’t have to be married to foster – it doesn’t matter if you’re married, in a long term relationship or single. In other words, relationship status doesn’t affect your ability to look after children. Families come in all shapes and sizes, so you won’t be judged for the size of yours. Whether you’re single or married, it’s equally important to have a support network, who can help, support and assist you in your fostering career.

How do you start fostering?

Becoming an approved foster carer will take 3-6 months, during which time you'll get to know us as an agency and we'll get to know you as a carer. To work well together and provide you with the support you need, we need to build a foundation of trust which can only come with time. But it's very east to get the process started, just give us a call on 020 8347 8741, or request a call back from us.

You probably have a lot of questions about fostering.

Luckily we have a lot of experience, so can usually answer them honestly. We are really happy to have an informal chat with you, about fostering, whether you are suitable, and what it’s really like. So why not arrange a 15 minute call – we promise you it will save you several hours of searching the internet for answers, plus, we really love talking to people about fostering.