Overview

Foster carers are a valuable part of our community, who enrich the lives of children in our borough who cannot be looked after by their own parents or family.

Individuals and couples should meet the following criteria:

  • one main carer must be available for the children in their care
  • you will need to have a level of stability and security in your life
  • applicants must have a spare bedroom
  • applicants must live in the London Borough of Bexley or a neighbouring borough

If you’re interested in becoming a foster carer contact the Fostering team:

Foster carers

Anyone offering a stable, secure home who can commit to providing the care a child or young person needs, can foster, subject to the normal checks.

Foster carers can be of any age from 21 upwards, although you will need to have the health and stamina to care for somebody else's child.

You can be a foster carer regardless of your ethnicity, religion, sexuality or marital status.

Some foster carers have their own children, others do not - but you will need to understand their needs and have had experience of dealing with children.

Payment and support package

Depending on the type of care provided we offer a wide range of excellent financial, training and support packages.

  • weekly allowances paid are generous and reflect the importance of the role the carer plays
  • the amounts paid will depend upon the age and the individual circumstances of the child
  • allowances to cover the costs of birthdays, Christmas and other special occasions
  • grants to cover special needs or other particular requirements

Application process

  • a member of the fostering team will contact you and will send you a questionnaire to complete and return
  • all information received is treated as confidential
  • your initial suitability is assessed based on the information given in the form
  • you may then be invited to attend a fostering information session which will give you a more in-depth perspective of what being a foster carer for Bexley means
  • there is no obligation, at this stage, to progress your application
  • if you decide to proceed with your application after the information session, a social worker will contact you to arrange an initial meeting at your family home to discuss the rest of the process
  • it can take from four to nine months from the initial visit to your approval as a foster carer

Different types of foster carers

Short term fostering

  • for children and young people who may return to their parents within a few days, weeks or months
  • during this period the child usually still retains regular contact with their birth parents

Long-term fostering

  • for children who cannot return to their parents and need to remain in foster care until they are ready to leave home and lead an independent life

Respite fostering

  • for short, regular planned stays

Connected persons/friends and family fostering

  • this is short or permanent foster care provided by people related to or previously known to a child

Supported Lodgings Provider

  • Supported Lodging Providers offer a room in their house and the emotional and practical support to enable a young person to gain the skills to live independently

Already a Foster Carer? Transfer to us

If you currently foster for another agency, it's easy to make the move to our fostering service. Bexley make this very easy and will aim to have you presented to fostering panel within two months from your enquiry. Even if you have children in placement, it is still possible to transfer!

Why foster with us instead of an agency?

Every week we receive enquiries from people thinking about joining us. Here are eight reasons why we think you should join us:

  • we are the biggest, the best and the oldest provider of foster care in Bexley
  • we don't make a profit from fostering, we just want the right carer for the right child
  • we have a large number of children in our care who need your skills, love and support to give them the future they deserve
  • we are committed to providing a safe, secure and loving future for all of them
  • we value experience - you get professional fees and allowances for essentials as well as holiday and birthday money for the children
  • we'll always place a child with our own carers before approaching other agencies
  • we can offer you a large range of training to support you and help develop your skills
  • we can offer a wide range of additional support services

Existing carers

Meet some of the people that are already foster carers for Bexley.

Watch our video below to hear about Isaac and Winnie's experience of fostering for Bexley.

Watch our video below to hear about Bob's experience of fostering for Bexley.

Watch our video below to hear about Kwasi's experience of fostering for Bexley.

Watch our video below to hear about Julie's experience of fostering for Bexley.

Watch our video below to hear about Leigh's experience of fostering for Bexley.