Can you foster as a single foster carer?

Becoming a foster carer is one of the most satisfying and rewarding things you can do and being single does not stop you from fostering. There is a long-standing myth that fostered children require a traditional family with a father and a mother, however single foster carers form a large percentage of our total foster families.

Children thrive in a variety of different families, of all shapes and sizes and the success of foster carers starts with the thoughtful matching of a child with a family. There are many times when single carers are the best match for children and hence why we work well with so many.

What we look for?

We look for certain qualities in our foster carers, qualities that convey their ability to be curious, playful, and empathetic. We look for patience and the ability to care deeply for a child who may have experienced abuse or neglect. As a foster carer, you will need these qualities.

As a single carer where you do not have a partner with whom you can share the care, you will welcome the support available from your supervising social worker and other likeminded foster carers. It’s nice to feel in a safe relationship where you can feel able to openly share your thoughts and ideas without fear of judgement. This comes from feeling part of a safe and valued relationship which we support you to develop with us.

We need our foster carers, to be in good health, and have a home that provides a bedroom and the space that a child needs.

How do you become a single foster carer?

You can be a single foster carer if you are male or female, as being a foster carer is not a gender specific role.

You will be required to undertake a rigorous application and assessment process, where you will be allocated a social worker to work closely with you. You will attend training and meet with foster carers and other people who are applying just like you. This is where you start to get to know other people in your area and develop supportive relationships.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have and send you more information.

What can you expect as a single foster carer?

It is worth considering whether you intend to continue to work while fostering or not. Some single foster carers continue to have part time jobs or work for themselves, from home, alongside fostering. You will need to be available to attend meetings from time to time and be available for children when they may be out of school. The needs of a child vary, depending on the child, and so when matching a child to you, we consider the needs of the child alongside your ability, lifestyle and availability to support the child to fulfil their true potential.

Being a single foster carer doesn’t necessarily mean that you will always need to be with the child in your care, as they are often in school during the day. The important thing is that flexibility is often required, but is dependent on the child living with you. You will need to consider that there are meetings with teachers, social workers and and other professionals that you will be requested to attend, and this can restrict the type of work you can therefore do.

We seek your preferences for the type of foster caring you would like to do. Fostering can be done on a short or longer term. We will talk to you about this and help you find what you feel will suit you best, although we recognise that the length of a placement can vary because each child’s situation differs.

If you are thinking of fostering as a single foster carer, we welcome your call so that we can answer your questions and provide you with more information. We appreciate that before taking the first step you will have a lot to think about, but there are lots of children and young people who need people like you to help them feel safe and cared for and we hope that you can see the opportunity to foster as a single person is very positive indeed

Does this sound like you?

If so, you have come to the right place and could be the type of person our looked after children need. We are very keen to hear from people who want to foster or find out more about what it entails.

To get in touch you can call us on 01223 800420 or email us directly at

Alternatively fill in the form on the right and we’ll get back to you when it’s convenient.