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Advice & Guides

Application Step Two: Your Initial Home Visit

After you submit an enquiry to be a foster carer with Compass, we’ll get in touch with you to arrange the next step in the fostering assessment process - an Initial Visit.
Let’s Get to Know Each Other!
Your Initial Visit helps us get to know you, and you us! Within 48 hours after your enquiry with us, one of our Assessing Social Workers will contact you to arrange a time to meet with you and your family.

Initial Visits provide you with the opportunity to find out more about fostering with us, including the type of support we’ll offer you, and the various training opportunities we provide. Your Initial Visit means you can ask your Assessing Social Worker any questions you have about fostering, Compass and everything in between.

Your Initial Visit also helps us to get to know more about you and your family, and what you can bring to the fostering role. We want to make sure that a foster child will be safe, comfortable and have everything they need while living with you.

Face-to-Face or Virtual?
Finding time to meet can be tricky, which is why most of our Initial Visits now take place virtually.

Virtual Initial Visits allow us greater flexibility when it comes to finding a suitable time to meet with you, helping to speed up the assessment process.

However, you can request a face-to-face visit should you prefer this – just let your recruitment officer know, and they will arrange this for you.

What Should You Expect?
The idea of an Initial Visit may feel a little daunting, but we’ll do our best to make you feel comfortable and at ease throughout.

During your Initial Visit, your Assessing Social Worker will ask you about various things to do with your fostering application.

They’ll likely talk to you about:

  • Your motivation for wanting to foster.
  • The answers you gave during your application.
  • How fostering will affect your family, and the kind of support networks you have.
  • Any relevant skills or experience you might have that will benefit you as a foster carer.
  • Different types of fostering placements (including short-term, long-term, parent and child and sibling placements) that you may be offered if approved.

They’ll also ask you to give them a tour of your home, including the spare bedroom you intend to use for fostering and any outdoor spaces. You’ll also be expected fill out a short form, with the help of your Assessing Social Worker.

How Long Will It Take?
There’s plenty to talk about during your initial visit. We want to make sure you have the answers to all your questions and come away with a deeper understanding of the role of a foster carer and everything it involves.

Your Initial visit should take around 2 hours in total. To make the process as easy and quick as possible, we ask that you have your ID documents to hand when we visit. This applies to both virtual and face-to-face meetings. Your Assessing Social Worker will tell you more about the ID documentation we require when they get in touch.

What Happens Next?
Following your Initial Visit, we’ll be in touch to discuss your application with you further. We’ll let you know whether we feel fostering is right for your current circumstances, and if we’d like to continue with your application.

We’ll let you know if you have a successful Initial Visit meaning you’ll move on to the next part of our assessment process.

If you have any further questions about your Initial Visit or how to become a foster parent in general, speak to your recruitment officer or Assessing Social Worker.

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