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Before you get approved as a foster carer, your application will be presented to the Fusion Fostering Panel. This is the final stage of the assessment process. Once all information has been presented to panel and a recommendation has been made, this will be passed onto the Agency Decsion Maker (ADM) who will make the decision based on the panel minutes and all information presented regarding you becoming an approved foster carer with Fusion.
The fostering panel will be a local meeting between our staff members as well as independent panel members who have a wide breadth of knowledge, skills and experience in the field. The Panel will be chaired by someone independent from the Agency, and may include a health practitioner, education profession, a care experienced adult as well as independent social workers. The diversity of the panel ensures a wide variety of experience is brought to the table to judge your application and individual circumstances.
It may sound daunting, but the fostering panel isn’t intended to scare you. Our team will make sure you are fully prepared and confident as you walk into the panel.
The role of the panel is to make a recommendation on your suitability to be a foster carer based on the evidence provided in your completed Form F assessment. Prior to submitting your Form F assessment, you will have read the report and have the opportunity to check all of the facts are correct. If you disagree with any facts, this would be an opportunity for you to iron this out with your assessor prior to everything being fully submitted to the panel. The panel members will have read your assessment prior to you attending panel and may want to discuss some of their views with the assessing social worker based on the assessment being presented on the day of panel.
You will be asked several questions about yourself and your application. Consider it like a normal job interview, answer the questions openly and honestly and you will be fine!
Our panel members are understanding and will let you take time with your answers. It is fine to be nervous, they just want to clarify any points from your application and get to know you a little better!
There will also be time for you to ask any questions you may have. It is an open conversation and the perfect opportunity to settle any final worries.
The panel meeting would normally last no longer than an hour and you will often be informed of the recommendations there and then. The panel may suggest one of the following outcomes:
Whatever the result, Fusion Fostering will be able to guide you as to the next steps. We can take you through the appeals process if required or help you to gather more information to satisfy the needs of the panel.
Once the panel has provided their recommendation, the final approval is up to Fusion Fostering’s ADM. The ADM makes the final decision regarding any application that has been presented to the panel. They will look at the same information as the panel members before the panel meeting, together with the minutes of the panel meeting after it has occurred. The ADM then uses their experience and authority to make an informed decision based on all information present. You will be notified of the result as soon as the ADM has confirmed their decision.
Congratulations, you’re officially a registered foster carer! Now you will await your first child placement. This may happen quickly or it may take a little longer depending on the needs of the local area and the type of child or children you are considering.
Just because you are approved, does not mean that you are now alone. Fusion Fostering will continue to provide ongoing training and support, guiding you from the moment your first child or children is placed with you. Our senior supervising social workers will keep in close contact with you and there will be an initial arrangement for you to meet the child before they are placed, if possible.
We want to make sure the process from approval to you having your first child or children placed is as smooth as possible.
To find out more about the fostering application process, contact us today for an informal chat or to receive more information.