How long does it take before our family can become foster carers?

The time it takes to become an approved foster carer varies.
Applicants are encouraged to progress at their own pace, however on average the process takes between 3 - 6 months.

Do children or young people usually stay in their local area when in foster care?

Children and foster carers are matched according to the child's needs and the preferred family structure of the carer or carers.
To minimise disruption to the child, they usually stay in their local area wherever possible.

Will the child go to our local school or will they stay at their own school?

If a child is staying for a short period they will usually remain at their own school so they continue to have contact with familiar people and places.
If it's a long term placement then schooling options for the child would be discussed in partnership with the child's case worker.

Can children and young people in foster care accompany our family on holidays?

Yes.
Holidays are often an experience that children and young people have not had. You will need to talk with the child's case worker as it may affect regular contact with a parent.

Can I nominate the age of the child I would prefer?

Yes.
You can give your preference about the age and gender of a child you think would fit best with your family and lifestyle.

Will the subsidy I receive affect my taxable income or Centrelink entitlements?

No.
You do not have to declare the subsidy you receive for the child or young person as income.

Can I choose the type of foster care I do?

Yes.
You can discuss your particular area of interest and what type of care you think may be suited to your family with your fostering agency.

Will fostering affect my family?

Yes.
It's important to include your family and all your household members in discussions about becoming a foster carer. All household members will need to meet with the fostering assessment worker and be involved in the process of becoming a foster carer.

Can I say no to a placement?

Yes.
Foster carers are volunteers. Your fostering agency will always discuss placements with you.

Will I have to have contact with a foster child's birth family?

No.
Each child in foster care has a case worker who is responsible for arranging birth family access. Arranging birth family access is not the responsibility of the foster carer.
Foster carers details are not provided to birth families.

Where can I get more information, advice and answers?

Some people begin by attending an information session about foster care where they can have their questions answered.
If you have particular questions about foster care it can be helpful to contact us direct.

What choices does a person have when they are thinking about becoming a foster carer?

When you become a carer with ac.care you can nominate the type of care that would best you’re you and your family.

You can nominate an age range of the children you would like to care for and the gender to suit your family and these may be modified as your circumstances change.

When you become registered as a foster carer you can choose when you take on the placement of a child and can say no to a placement at any time if it does not fit in with your current commitments.

Does the child have to have their own room in a foster carer’s house?

The requirements to become a foster carer is that you are able to provide a safe and nurturing home environment and it is recommended that foster children do have their own space. Foster carers may choose to foster more than one child which enables siblings to stay together and they can be placed together, if appropriate. This will be discussed with the ac.care support workers at the time of placement.

What help or support is there when you become a foster carer?

  • ac.care provide 24 hour 7 days a week support to all our carers what this means is that carers have direct contact with one of our support team to answer any questions or to provide assistance when needed.
  • ac.care offers a clinical psychologist that is available for carers and offers regular training sessions for all of our carers
  • When you become a foster carer with ac.care you have regular home visits from our support team and regular phone contact to discuss any issues or concerns and success stories you may have when fostering a child.
  • All ac.care carers have the opportunity for regular respite care from other carers allowing your family have respite from the placement.

I'm a foster carer with ac.care and I've forgotten your after hours call number.

8724 5476

How do I become a foster carer?

Becoming a foster carer can be very rewarding If you are interested in becoming a foster carer the first step is to contact ac.care to arrange a time to speak with one of our team. Following this you submit your application and begin the assessment process.

What kind of people are foster carers?

Foster carers are normal everyday people who have chosen to provide foster care as a way of supporting their community.

People who care for children from all cultural and religious backgrounds
Anyone with a passion to care for children, committed and has the time to provide a high standard of care for children.

Anyone that can provide a safe nurturing and stable environment for children to develop and grow. Someone who wants to learn more about providing better care for children. Someone who can work as part of a team