What is Foster Care?

When a child or young person is unable to live with their family, and a court has determined they need care and protection, their care arrangements become the responsibility of the government. This is called out-of-home care (OOHC) or statutory care. These children, like all other children, need a safe, nurturing, and supportive place to live.

Foster care is one of the OOHC placement options, where a child lives with a ‘foster’ family who provides them with care and support by giving them a safe, nurturing and supportive home.

Some children only stay in foster care for a few days or weeks, and sometimes it can be long-term. While the initial goal is to always have children retur­n to their family where it is safe to do so, other children will need care until eighteen years of age or beyond.

Who can be a Foster Carer?

Allambi Care prides itself on our wonderfully diverse team of foster carers. It is this diversity that assists children and young people in obtaining safe and caring homes with a carer who is best suited to them. Good foster carers have a strong desire to help children, to connect with them and learn how to best support them. If you come with a willingness to learn, we have the skills and knowledge to help you with your fostering journey. Being committed, patient, resilient, having good self-care skills and being able to work as part of a team are also important qualities of a great foster carer.

So, if you have the desire to help a child by fostering, we want to start this journey with you. Your race, culture, sexual orientation, marital status, living circumstances, age and income don’t exclude you. Allambi Care believes that diversity within foster carers means we are able to match the best possible family for a child to live with.

To help you better understand who can be foster carers, we have some examples below of people who have been Foster Carers with Allambi Care.

+ Stacey is a single female, is employed full-time, is renting an apartment and has never had children of her own. Stacey has a child stay with her for one weekend a month.

+ Peter and Michelle are retired, on a pension and own their own home. They have an Italian heritage and have a large family. Fostering is both challenging and rewarding for them, and the allowance they receive helps them pay for some of the expenses associated with caring for a young person.

+ Paul and Mark are married and are renting. Paul identifies as Aboriginal and works full-time and Mark is studying at University. They have two foster children in their care.

What are the steps to become a Foster Carer?

The process

1. Registration of Interest

To register your interest in becoming a Foster Carer and for more information enquire with the form below and get in touch with our team.

2. Information Sharing Session

We will invite your family to meet with our staff, this can either occur at the office or in your home. Here you can ask any questions you may have and decide whether you’d like to proceed to the next step.

3. Pre-Accreditation Training

Training is a required step across all agencies. We equip you with skills, knowledge, and insights for the Foster Care journey.

4. Assessment interviews and report

The assessment process involves a range of competency interviews and we work closely with you to discover whether fostering is a suitable option for you at this time. This process consists of two to three visits to your home to collect information from you and your family, to explore the skills, qualities, and experience that you will bring to the role of being a Foster Carer.

5. Panel

Once your assessment, references and relevant checks are completed, you will be presented to Allambi Care's Fostering and Permanency Panel for an authorisation decision.

6. Authorisation and Family Match

If the panel authorises your application, we will arrange a time with you to complete the relevant paperwork. The team will then begin matching a child to your experience and preferences.

7. Ongoing Support and Carer Review

Once placed in your care, you will receive ongoing support from the Allambi Care Foster Care team through regular contact and training.

What do I need to become a Foster Carer?

There are some practical aspects you will need to become a foster carer.

+ A spare bedroom
+ A predictable and stable home environment
+ To be over 18 years of age, of any faith, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender expression
+ Be willing to dedicate your time, whether it be a weekend, a week or full-time care.

How will I be supported?

Allambi Care will support your foster care journey with:

We will provide you with quality training tailored to Foster Carers. We want you to feel confident and capable in your role as a Foster Carer. We have quality trainers to equip you with the knowledge and skills necessary to provide therapeutic support to the young person in your care.

Round-the-clock assistance
: We understand that fostering can present challenges at any time, which is why we offer 24-hour support. Our team is available to provide guidance and advice whenever you need it.

Financial aid:
Foster Carers receive a tax-free allowance that assists in the day-to-day costs of raising a child. This allows you to focus on what truly matters - creating a nurturing environment for the young person in your care.

Holistic healthcare
: The wellbeing of the young people in our care is our top priority. We work closely with you to ensure that they have access to specialist health services tailored to meet their physical and emotional needs.

Opportunities to return home safely
: We actively collaborate with you to explore opportunities for the young person to return with their family or kin whenever possible. At Allambi Care, our goal is to ensure that the fostering experience is truly enriching and fulfilling, both for you and the young person you are providing care for.

We start with a conversation

Most people are a bit unsure about who can be a Foster Carer. The truth is, there is not just one type of Foster Carer.

Explore Foster Care