How to become a foster carer

After you apply

After you apply to become a foster carer we will carry out checks and assessments to make sure you are suitable.

First visit

A social worker will visit you at your home to talk with you about your application. We will check your home itself, including the spare bedroom you can offer if fostering child over 2 years-old.

You will be asked to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) form and a consent form giving us permission to make other essential checks.

We will also ask you for references at this time.

If all checks and references come back satisfactory, you can move on to the next stage.

Fostering skills training

For the next stage of the process you will be invited to a series of training sessions is to prepare you for the realities of fostering. These could run either for 3 days or 6 evenings.

You can choose whether you would prefer to attend day or evening training.

All adult members of the household must complete training, but you do not have to attend training sessions together.


If you and our team are happy for your application to proceed, a social worker will carry out your assessment.

The assessment is a detailed process that will involve exploring many aspects of your life, from birth right through to now. It will involve regular discussions in your home over several months.

Fostering panel

The fostering panel is an independent group that meets once a month. The panel meets with all prospective foster carers and considers their completed assessments. The panel makes the final decision whether or not to approve foster carers.

How long it takes

The process lasts about 4 months from the date of your first visit to the date of the fostering panel.

Contact us

Fostering team

: 0800 652 1256 (freephone)


If you're interested in fostering with Thurrock Council, please send us your contact details via the Foster East website.

Foster East: Foster with Thurrock Council