ways to foster

who can foster

who can foster in wales?

No two children are the same, and neither is the foster parent they need. 

The truth is, there are children in your local community who need someone to listen to them. To believe in them. Someone like you – whether you own your home or rent it, whether you’re married or single, whatever your ethnicity or sexual orientation.

We celebrate the diversity of our foster carers. It’s the skills and experience you bring that matter most. We believe a wide and more varied skillset is a huge positive.

Still not sure if fostering is for you? Keep reading to find out.

foster myths: separating fact from fiction

No matter who you are, fostering is an opportunity to make a real difference to children in your local community. It means different things – from overnight stays to something longer-term. It needs different people too. That’s why we need diverse carers with different backgrounds, experiences and stories. 

We’re your dedicated expert base. Along with your friends, family and community, we all join forces to achieve the best for children. 

When it comes to who can foster, we ask: can you make a difference, and do you want to?

can I foster if I work full time?

If your work life is busy, it might mean you need additional support from family and friends in your role as a foster carer. Holding down a full time job isn’t a barrier. It’s just something that might need extra thought.

Fostering can fit into your life, and some kinds might be a better fit than others. Some foster parents work full time and foster part time by offering short breaks. Others foster full time, where fostering comes first. 

Fostering is a commitment, and it needs a team approach. You will work alongside the right mix of social workers, teachers and therapists, and we are here to support you at every step.

can I be a foster carer if I live in rented accommodation?

Whether renting or paying a mortgage, if you feel secure where you live, then so could a child. We can figure out what works best for you depending on where you call home. 

Think about it this way. Sure, your spare room could be used for storage. But it could also be something a little more amazing: a safe space for someone who needs it.

can I foster if I have children of my own?

There’s no typical foster family, and no typical foster child either. If you have children of your own, taking care of foster children means extending your family and adding more people to love and care for.

Having foster siblings can be hugely rewarding, too. It gives children insight, helps them form friendships and builds their ability to care for others.

am I too old to foster?

There’s actually no upper age limit when it comes to fostering. You can be fresh into your 20s or well into your 70s. No matter your age, you’ll get the expert local support and training you need to equip you for the journey ahead.

am I too young to foster?

There’s no lower age limit with fostering either. Life experience is a great bonus, but being young doesn’t mean you can’t be part of the fostering community. With our network of support to guide you, you can enjoy the path ahead regardless of your age.

do couples who foster have to be married or in a civil partnership?

There are no special requirements around being in a relationship, or the length of relationships – marriage and civil partnerships aren’t a condition either. Children need stability, so whether you are single or in a relationship, if you can offer stability and a place of safety then you could foster.  Your local Foster Wales team will help you to work out if now is the right time for you.

can I foster if I’m transgender?

Yes, you can. Your gender doesn’t have any bearing on whether you’ll make a good foster carer. It’s your personality, your skills and your caring nature that are most important.

can I foster if I’m gay?

Your sexual orientation isn’t a factor when it comes to fostering. What matters most is your commitment  to being the person who listens and cares, who offers a safe space, to a child. 

can I foster if I have a dog or cat?

Having a dog, or any other kind of pet, doesn’t mean you can’t foster. It means we will include them in your assessment, to make sure they and and any future foster children will get on well together.

Pets can offer a different kind of support and be a real benefit in a foster family.

can I foster if I smoke?

Local Authorities have different policies around smoking (including e-cigarettes and vaping) and foster care, the most important thing is being honest. We’ll offer guidance on how to quit if you’d like to. In every case, it’s about finding the right match between your family and the children in our care.

can I foster if I’m unemployed?

We know everyone has ups and downs with employment. When it comes to being a good foster parent, being available to offer support, guidance and love every day is what matters. So, if you aren’t currently employed this won’t stop you from becoming a foster carer. We’ll work with you to make sure it’s the right time for you.

can I foster if I don’t have a big house?

Every foster home is different, and that’s how it should be. You don’t need a huge house to foster a child, but you do need a spare room where they can feel at home.

find out more about fostering

Two children laughing sitting in garden in Cardiff

types of fostering

There are many ways to make a difference. Fostering can mean a day, a week, a year or maybe more.

learn more
Two children sitting on cliffs with bay behind in sun

common questions

How does fostering work and what can you expect? Find the answers here.

read more
Two young boys in playground playing together on seesaw

support and rewards

Fostering is rewarding in more ways than one. Find your Local Authority to discover all the rewards:

learn more

find your local foster wales team

As the national network of Local Authority fostering services across Wales, we're by your side wherever you are. Enter your postcode to find your local foster care team.

Please enter a postcode Sorry, we were unable to find a local authority near that postcode.