Approved to Foster

Stuart Hatch was recently approved to foster and writes below on his experience of the approvals process…

The seed was planted to foster and my wife and I started our journey into the approval process. We carefully answered all of the questions on the forms and handed them into our social worker.  We were handed the same form again a few months later to fill in which proved frustrating.  Anyway these things happen. We were invited to attend introductory courses which we found very helpful.

The hourglass sand of motivation was slightly draining due to the thought of future upheaval to our lives.  There were long periods of non communication on our application progress which also evaporated our spirits. We were informed to purchase chairs as we were not allowed to sit on the beds, which made me feel slightly uncomfortable but I quickly saw the bigger picture. The overriding motivation that distinguished all else was the thought of fulfilment; we could make a positive difference to their lives.

We were given a handbook which I found very comforting and helpful.  I felt a little discriminated against for being male as I turned the page and read ‘’Teenagers are not allowed to travel in the front seat of the car, this especially applies to male drivers’’.

The reality of the situation was starting to become more real; could we cope in the jungle of fostering life? Soon we would find out.   ‘’I am pleased to say you have been approved to foster’’ said the chair of the approval panel; the approval process was complete, the seed had germinated a year after we had applied.

In through the door he marched with his miniature suitcase tailing behind. His confidence was extraordinary for a boy of his age, especially taking into account the unfortunate circumstances he had experienced during the beginning of his life. His eating habits were excellent and he would go to bed routinely every evening with no trouble at all; one of the foster families he had stayed with previously had obviously done a very good job. Our first placement had arrived, our journey along the path of fostering had just begun.

The Rees Centre has published two literature reviews linked to this topic:

‘Why do people become foster carers? An international review on the motivation to foster.’
‘How are foster carers selected? An international literature review of instruments used within foster carer selection’.



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