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Striking a balance between fostering and working

Can I foster and work at the same time?

Nearly 40% of foster carers work and foster at the same time (The Fostering Network), so we’re experienced in helping people like you strike a balance between fostering and working.

We discuss ways foster carers can foster and work at the same time.

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Encourage your employer to become a fostering friendly employer

What is a fostering friendly employer? A fostering friendly employer is an employer who supports employees who foster with an easy to understand HR policy, making it simple for foster carers with other employment to strike a balance between their two roles.

This includes allowing employees time off for fostering training and the assessment process. It can also mean flexible working or letting foster carers swap shifts if they need to attend meetings with their supervising social worker.

Like with any adult with childcare responsibilities, foster carers can attend to emergencies if they arise - such as a child feeling poorly so having to leave school early.

The Fostering Network has a list of fostering friendly employers which explains more about the scheme - but don’t worry if you can't see your company here! Your employer may have fostering friendly policies in place but have not joined the ‘fostering friendly’ programme yet. Ask your manager or HR department for more information.

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“My employer helped me become a foster carer. The Time Off For Foster Carers policy gave me that extra layer of support, that meant I could attend all the planning meetings for my foster child’s move. I felt really supported by the Council during my assessment from the very start.
It made me feel that Bradford Council was acknowledging my status as an employee who also fosters. I felt that I had got the Council’s full support.” - Vickie, foster carer and Bradford Council employee.

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Did you know? If your employer is not currently registered as fostering friendly, we can help them achieve the award - just contact a member of our team today to learn more.

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Become a part-time foster carer

Some foster carers may prefer to foster part-time around other employment opportunities. Here at Bradford Fostering, we offer several part-time types of fostering so you can make the right choice for you and your family.

Our part-time fostering offerings include:

  1. Shared care providing short breaks for children with disabilities

  2. Support care providing short breaks for children at risk of family breakdown

  3. Short break/holiday care for children already in foster care

  4. Specialist foster care (including young parent and child care, emergency care and PACE care)

Part-time foster carers support children and their caregivers with planned after school, overnight and weekend stays. A part-time foster carer may look after children who currently live with their parents, family or with other foster carers depending on their needs.

Though a part-time foster carer does not look after children 24/7, you will foster a child in your own home for at least 8 sessions each month, including overnight and at least 1 weekend per month.

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“We explained we couldn't commit right now to full-time fostering, and were then asked what we thought about part-time support care, which we weren't aware of. We live in the district and they offer the short breaks/support care which fits in well with our work/home life.” - Ashley and Mark, part-time foster carers.

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Are there times where I may not be able to foster and work at the same time?

At Bradford Fostering, our decisions are made in the best interests of the child and your family, so there are times where you may not be able to work and foster at the same time. These may include:

  1. The needs of the foster child

  2. The age of the foster child

  3. The type of fostering you do (full-time, part-time etc)

  4. Your current job

  5. Your relationships and/or support network

For more information about times where you may be unable to foster and work at the same time, please book a call back with our team, where we will discuss your personal circumstances with you.

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Would you like more information about fostering a child in the Bradford district? Please book a call back with our friendly team today and learn more about how you could make a difference to a child’s life.

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