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I'm a foster Carer - AMA
62

JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:26

I've been reading the thread from the child protection social worker.
I have so much respect for SWs they are on their knees at the moment with ridiculous levels of cases.
I've been a FC for 18 years now and happy to answer questions if anyone is interested.

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Bundlesofchocforme · 13/08/2022 21:30

Thank you for what you do xx

What do you think about contact after adoption? Do you think ongoing contact would have been in the best interests of the children you have cared for?

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Hotsoputupfeet · 13/08/2022 21:34

Interested to know if you feel children are always removed for the right reasons?

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Okeydoky · 13/08/2022 21:36

Have you ever had a child sent back to their b birth family where you've had serious concerns for them? How do you manage that? I imagine it would be very hard.

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Hedonism · 13/08/2022 21:47

Do you feel that you get the right level of financial support (fees, allowances etc)? If not, what would you change?

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TigerStripesRoarrr · 13/08/2022 21:49

Did you request specific ages?
What's the shortest foster you?
Did you ever regret fostering?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:49

Bundlesofchocforme

Thank you.
I'm actually a great believer in children having some sort of contact after adoption.

We adopted one of our children after two years of fostering her. I try really hard to have a good relationship with birth families, although it's not always possible. I think it's really important for the child to see the adults around them getting on.
I would take our daughter to meet her biological mother twice yearly. We would just meet for a coffee and catch up. Dd decided at 15 that she no longer wanted contact but she knows we will support her if she changes her mind.

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elzober · 13/08/2022 21:50

Can you work full time and foster?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:52

Generally I do believe children are removed for the right reasons. It's never an easy decision to remove a child. I'm sure mistakes are made but SWs don't remove children if they can help
It.

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HoollyWugger · 13/08/2022 21:53

Have you had any children who have been physically aggressive to you/your home? What support does your LA offer in these circumstances?

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DoubleShotEspresso · 13/08/2022 21:54

What's the shortest time a child has spent with you? And what is a typical timeframe? I'd be very interested in doing this but also worry at how my DC would respond if a child had to leave....
And also is there much call for parents with experience of SEN?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:55

Okedoky

I've only had a handful of children go back to birth family and I thought it was the right decision.
If I didn't agree I would certainly be saying so.

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:55

Hedonism

Yes I'm

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Mrs86 · 13/08/2022 21:55

Hi, currently on 'training course' stage of a fostering assessment and had our first contact/introduction yesterday and she was lovely! (The child is family). She seemed like a kid her age would be. The SW keeps telling us things like she will need constantly reassuring (which I get as she's had so much upheaval already and she's 4), seeks a lot of adult attention and likes to be at the centre of everything esp around other kids, I was told she hit her foster brother with a ball (not hard) when his own social worker came to visit . I have a lovely ds who is 5 and kind of excited about it all. I'm just worried/nervous and going into the unexpected. Have you ever looked after children in this situation? Is it hard for them to integrate with other kids? How hard is it for them to settle in a new home? I'm sorry, so many questions. TIA. 🙂

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 21:59

Hedonism

We get a very good allowance. I'm a level 3 carer so the pay is very good. When we first started fostering we only got an allowance for the child and no skills fee so it wasn't great.
Although if you broke my earnings down to hourly pay 24/7 it's probably crap.
I would never tell anyone to foster for the money though and if anyone does they really shouldn't be doing this job.

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GnomeDePlume · 13/08/2022 21:59

Do you foster a particular age group?
What is your normal length of placement?
What drew you to foster care work?

Thinking back to when you first started as a foster carer what advice would you give yourself?

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wheresmymojo · 13/08/2022 22:00

Are the checks on FC enough in your opinion?

Obviously there was the recent horrific case of the child murdered by its foster carers (who had adopted or were in the process of adopting).

My nephew's 15 yo girlfriend is in foster care and her FC is an alcoholic so the levels of care are way off what should be expected as a basic minimum (meals made, washing done, basic care needs met). However she describes this FC as the best situation she's had because at least she isn't abusive.

How common is this?

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SquirrelSoShiny · 13/08/2022 22:02

Was it worth it?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 22:04

I foster ages 0-18
In the past we've fostered newborns and younger children. Now I prefer older teenagers.
The shortest placements have been 1 night. The longest 13 years.
Sometimes if we've had a particularly difficult time I think why the duck do we do this. That doesn't last long though. I love want I do mostly Grin

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Madwife123 · 13/08/2022 22:05

I’m glad you get a good allowance. I foster 2 children and because we are related to them we not get the banding payment and only get the child’s allowance which is £148 a week. It’s really not enough to support a child considering they expect you to not work.

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 22:06

Elsober
SS prefer carers to be available and not work. We're often called to schools when a young person is struggling so having another job doesn't really work with fostering

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DoubleShotEspresso · 13/08/2022 22:07

That's really helpful thanks!

It sounds like you have been brilliantly successful at this, I'd love to think we could do it, we have talked a lot since lockdown of doing it. Think I need to investigate how tough the criteria might be.
How long did it take you from application to get approved and welcome your first FC please?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 22:10

HulleyWugger

I've fostered for 18 years and only recently experienced violence towards me. I was punched in the face.
There have been times when a child has damaged our property and that is very frustrating but it doesn't happen often.

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purpleme12 · 13/08/2022 22:11

What was the process like to be approved for fostering?
What questions did they ask about you and your life?
Was it hard? The process?

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TigerStripesRoarrr · 13/08/2022 22:12

Thanks for answering. Is there adequate emotional support for you? I can imagine the stories and experiences you heard from young people can be very upsetting I know it would affect my mental health but then I'm not built to be a foster carer!
If you foster with a spouse or partner has fostering negatively impacted your relationship?

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JimBob61 · 13/08/2022 22:13

DoubleShotEspresso

Any kind of experience is a benefit and SEN would definitely be a positive.
Timeframe can be anything from one night to years.
Short term fostering can be up to two years and long term anything over that.

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