Bringing a new foster child into your home is an exciting time for the whole family. You may not know exactly what to expect, but you want to make them feel as welcome as possible.
To help things go smoothly, follow our top foster child bedroom ideas!
1. Know the requirements
Probably the least fun part, but the most important! Foster children must be given their own bedrooms unless you are fostering siblings – then they will often be able to share. You can read more about fostering requirements in our Foster Care FAQs.
It’s also important to consider safety and the child’s age when it comes to furniture like beds and desks. Make sure the furniture you give them is sturdy and age appropriate.
2. Be flexible
You may not know much about your child’s preferences before they arrive, so it’s best to stick to a neutral palette and keep decorations to a minimum. Let your child decorate their own room – it will help them feel more at home in their space.
You may be able to get some information about what your child likes before they arrive from the family finding team. One of our foster carers, Claire, uses what she learns about a new child’s past experiences and interests to put together a couple of things for the room that she thinks they’ll like – see the examples below!
3. Give your child space to express themselves
Make it easy for your child to make the space their own with some arts and crafts supplies. White boards, peg boards and chalk boards are also great ways to give your child a chance to make the room feel more their own.
4. Focus on comfort
One thing you can do before your child arrives is to add comfort. Soft bedding, throw pillows, comfy chairs, or beanbags can all make the room feel homely and welcoming – and are easy for your child to rearrange if they want to.
5. Don’t forget function
You might not be able to do too much by way of decorating, but you can make sure your child has a space that meets their needs. Younger children need room to play, while older children need a desk and supplies for homework.
Include small essentials, like hangers for their clothes, bins for storing toys, a bedside lamp for reading, and toiletries. Children coming into a new home might feel shy about asking for something to eat, so it’s also a good idea to leave out a few simple (and non-perishable) snacks.
6. Keep it simple but comfortable
As these photos from Compass Fostering carer Claire show, you don’t need a lot to make a space feel welcoming. “On arrival I always have welcome packs,” Claire says, “even with a few hours’ notice, and I find out anything they might like.”
You can see how Claire uses the information she has about the children to put together rooms that would suit a football and comic book fan, and a unicorn lover – with cards signed by the whole family to make them feel extra welcome!
Whether you’re a first-time carer or a seasoned veteran, bringing in a new child into your home is always an exciting (and nerve-wracking) experience – but don’t worry! Our friendly support workers are on hand 24/7 to answer any questions you may have.
Get in touch to request an information pack and find out more about becoming part of the Compass Fostering family.