Talk to us about fostering 01722 442 725

Can you Work and Foster?

line of figurines representing 'can you work and foster'

We are often asked, “can you work and foster?” The good news is that with proper planning and support, it is certainly possible. Many of our Foster Carers successfully combine fostering with other types of work.

If you are thinking of working and fostering, you must carefully consider your circumstances and discuss your plans with your fostering agency. It is important that your work does not detract from your ability to care for your foster child – the child’s needs must always come first.

If you have any questions relating to your employment circumstances, give us a call and we will happily talk things through.

Deciding Whether to Work and Foster

It is important to know that Foster Carers receive financial support, and in most cases, this will be tax-free. Most Carers find the pay is generous enough that they do not need to work alongside fostering. Read more about Foster Carer pay and allowances.

This aside, many Foster Carers enjoy their work outside of fostering and manage to balance the two. According to the Fostering Network, nearly 40% of Foster Carers combine fostering with other work.

Things to Consider if you are Employed

Whilst fostering is a hugely rewarding role, it requires a lot of time and dedication. If you’re working and fostering, you will have to consider:

  1. Whether your employer is flexible and can accommodate your responsibilities as a Foster Carer.
  2. Whether you have the energy and emotional capacity to combine fostering and other work.
  3. The type of Foster Care you are interested in and the specific needs of the child, and how you will balance this with your career outside of fostering.
  4. The number of children you choose to foster and how this will affect your capacity to take on outside work.

Can you Foster and Work Full-Time?

Some Foster Carers manage to balance full-time work and foster care by being in a relationship where each partner works different hours. For example, one Carer may be available to take the child to school, and the other will be around to pick them up. If you are fostering as a single person, this may make it difficult to work full-time.

When working full-time, a key thing to consider is whether you will have enough time to yourself. Fostering can be emotionally taxing, so it’s essential to allow yourself time to recharge.

Roles that Lend Themselves to Fostering

Ultimately, while it may be challenging, working and fostering can be incredibly rewarding. Here are a few roles that lend themselves well to fostering:

  • Teachers and teaching assistants
  • Freelancers
  • Flexible remote workers

There are also many fostering friendly employers who offer flexible working and paid time off for training and settling a new child into their home.

Can I Work Part-Time and Foster

Many Foster Carers combine fostering with part-time work, as this offers slightly more flexibility. It allows foster parents to adjust their work hours to meet the needs of the child. It also means they have more time to complete the necessary paperwork and attend training and supervision sessions.

Foster Carer Roles and Responsibilities

It is important that anyone interested in fostering understands Foster Carer roles and responsibilities. These include:

  • Being there for your child, day or night, whenever they need you.
  • Being available if any emergencies arise.
  • Ensuring your foster child goes to school (this may not be the school most local to you).
  • Looking after your child during school holidays.
  • Attending contact meetings with your foster child and their birth family.
  • Attending mandatory and non-mandatory Foster Carer training courses.
  • Attending meetings about your child, including supervision sessions with your supervising social worker.
  • Taking part in Foster Carer support groups.
  • Maintaining a safe, loving and nurturing home environment.

Is Fostering a Full-Time Job?

Whilst it is possible to work and foster, it is important to know that fostering is a full-time career. This means you receive all the benefits you get from a good employer, including training, supervision, support and career progression opportunities. Foster Carers also receive a weekly allowance that covers the child’s needs and compensates them for their professional skills and care.

Fostering is incredibly rewarding but it takes a lot of hard work and dedication. Children in care have often experienced a great deal of trauma, so will need someone with the time, energy and resilience to stay by their side through thick and thin.

If you have any questions about working alongside fostering, speak to our Carer Enquiry Team. They will happily talk through your circumstances and help you decide if fostering could be right for you.

Talk to us today to find out more. Call 0333 0603 962 or email

Get in touch to find out more

Enquire Today

Do you feel you have the energy and true commitment to make a positive difference to a child’s or young person’s life?

Get in Touch
Request a Call