Whether you’re near the end of your assessment process with us, or your fostering journey is just beginning – it’s good to have an idea about the types of questions you’ll be asked in the final step of your assessment: your fostering panel interview.
This isn’t a session to grill you, but more a chance for the panel members to get to know you as a person. Whilst this can feel daunting, you will have had lots of discussions with your Assessing Social Worker about the topics that these questions are based around. The group of people sitting on the panel will have read your assessment (your Form F Report) and considered your own personal circumstances and lifestyle, so mostly they are tailored to you as an individual.
That being said, it’s always good to have an idea about the kind of thing you’d like to say, how you’d like to come across to others and being able to put your thoughts into words.
Take a look through some of these example questions and have a think about how you would answer them – we don’t want to put you in a position where you are surprised by anything we ask you.
Why would you like to be a foster carer?
If you’re at panel, you’ll have been asked this fairly often by now, likely at the beginning when you first showed interest in becoming a foster carer, throughout the process with your Assessing Social Worker and now finalising your assessment. You’ll be well-versed in your answer and that’s great, panel will want to make sure that you’ve thought about your motives especially this far into the process!
What’s your support network like?
We want to make sure that you as a carer will be getting the support you’ll need from those around you, emotionally and physically, like help with the school run or doctors’ appointments. We’ll be there for the expertise, guidance and everything else, but it will be good to know that you’ve got someone you can have a cup of tea with when it gets a little challenging.
How will your family adapt to fostering?
This could cover one or many things; perhaps you have children who will need to share their space with another child when they may not have had to before. Or maybe your partner works away from home occasionally and you’ve had discussions around how this will fit in with placements. You could be a single applicant who has applied along with the support of a family member who lives outside of your home. Whatever your circumstance, it’s important to know and acknowledge how fostering with affect those around you, both for your family members as well as the young person you’ll be caring for.
What did you think about your Skills to Foster course?
We believe in empowering our carers to develop a full range of skills and professional expertise – not only to help and support the children they look after, but also to enrich and enhance your own lives. The three-day Skills to Foster course is an important part of your assessment, we like to offer you the opportunity to mix with other prospective foster carers, learn about the types of care that young people may require and create an environment that you feel comfortable asking questions in. Panel will be interested in your take away from the course, and as you’ll be required to attend additional training once you become a foster carer it’s good to have an idea about what you find stimulating, too.
If you have any questions, please get in touch, our highly experienced team of specialists would be happy to talk through any concerns with you.