How to become a foster carer
If you are interested in becoming a foster carer, you can let us know by submitting an expression of interest.
To express your interest in becoming a carer, you must be:
- over 18 years of age, and
- eligible to obtain, or already have, a Blue Card.
Before you begin
Before you submit an expression of interest to become a carer, it is important that you have considered how this decision will affect your life, lifestyle, family and friends. Have you:
- read about the steps to become a foster carer on this page?
- considered both the rewards and challenges?
- read about the types of foster care?
- read real stories from foster carers?
- spoken to your family and friends about your desire to become a foster carer and the impact it may have on your life?
If you need to find out more information before submitting an expression of interest, please phone the Foster Carer Recruitment Line on 1300 550 877 or contact Queensland Foster and Kinship Care.
How to express your interest in becoming a foster carer
If you have considered all the information provided, apply to become a foster carer. Once your form has been received, you will be contacted to discuss the formal process for becoming a carer.
Queensland Foster and Kinship Care, the peak agency for representing and advocating for foster and kinship carers in Queensland, manages the foster and kinship care recruitment line and responds to online expressions of interest. Once they receive your expression of interest, they will contact you to provide further information about the foster care program.
The process to become an approved foster carer usually takes around 3 to 6 months. This varies depending on your individual circumstances and the type of care you want to provide.
Following your submission of an expression of interest, you may be invited to attend an information session in your local area.
To become a foster carer, you will be assisted to complete the following forms, interviews and training:
- Application for approval form. This gives the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women (Child Safety) information to complete personal history checks for you and your adult household members. This includes consideration of criminal and child protection history, domestic violence and traffic history.
- Blue card application. This must be completed by you and any other adult members of the household. Child Safety can help with this process.
- Household safety study. This will be completed by the person making the assessment and includes mandatory safety requirements that must be met prior to you being approved as a carer.
- Health and wellbeing questionnaire. This questionnaire will be completed with the help of the person making the assessment. A medical check from your general practitioner (GP) is required as part of this process.
- Referee checks. Referee checks are a mandatory requirement and are conducted as part of the initial and renewal assessments, including employer referee checks if you are in child-related employment.
- Required interviews. These will be conducted by the person making the assessment. You, your children (depending on their age), any adult household members and significant others will be interviewed.
- Pre-service training. This training will provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to commence your role as a foster carer.
Please talk to Queensland Foster and Kinship Care about how to access these forms and who will assist you.
If your application is approved by Child Safety you will:
- receive a letter confirming that you have been approved as a foster carer
- receive a Certificate of Approval as a foster carer; this is for an initial 12 months and requires renewal every 2 years thereafter, upon application and approval
- work with Child Safety and your non-government foster and kinship care service to develop a Foster Carer Agreement detailing the support available to help you fulfil your role, ongoing training requirements and the types of placements you are willing to consider.
If your application is not approved by Child Safety you will receive a letter stating the reasons for the decision and your right of review.
If you would like additional information or resources you can contact:
- the Foster Carer Recruitment Line on 1300 550 877
- Queensland Foster and Kinship Care (a non-government organisation for carers) on (07) 3256 6166.