Could I Become a Foster Carer?

All you need to know...

Foster Carers come from all walks of life and backgrounds, just like the children and young people they care for. The main requirement is a genuine interest in the welfare of children and the ability to provide a safe, stable and nurturing environment in which they can thrive and prosper.

There are many myths as to who can and who can't foster and the list below is designed to provide accurate advice to anyone considering a career in foster care.



To become a foster carer with Ethelbert, you must be at least 25 years of age. There is no upper age limit, as long as you’re fit and healthy.



You will need to have a minimum of one spare bedroom and either own your home or have a stable tenancy agreement.


Sexuality and Gender

You can apply to become a foster carer irrespective of your sexuality or gender alignment. Applications from across the LGBT community are welcomed.


Marital Status

Whether you are single man or woman, married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting, you can apply to become a foster carer.


Culture & Religion

We need foster carers from all walks of life as children tend to thrive best in families that can reflect their own culture, language and religion.


Health & Disability

Health impairment or disability needn’t be a barrier to fostering, as long as you have the ability to provide the lifestyle necessary for an active child or young person.


Birth Children

If you have your own children living at home under the age of five, we would not normally be able to consider your application until your children reach school age.


Criminal Records

As would be expected, in order to ensure the safety of children and young people, thorough background checks are undertaken in respect of all prospective foster carers and anyone living in their home. These include detailed criminal record checks. However, only certain criminal convictions, such as crimes against children or crimes of a sexual nature, will automatically disqualify you from becoming a foster carer, all others are assessed individually.


If you feel there may be a reason you wouldn’t be able to foster, we would be happy to provide confidential, sensitive advice. Please call us on 01843 823762 for an informal conversation with one of our social workers.


Ethelbert Fostering Services actively promote equal opportunities and value diversity in all areas of our work and in the recruitment of our staff teams and foster carers. To support this, we are keen to increase currently under-represented sections of our communities and encourage applications from a cross-section of society, irrespective of gender, sexual identity, ethnicity, faith, age or disability.

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Ethelbert Children's Services -
Residential Children's Homes, Fostering and.Specialist Education
17 Leigh Road, Ramsgate, Kent CT12 5EU
Tel: 01843 823762
© Ethelbert Children's Services 2018