Steps to becoming a foster carer

Baptcare has proven to provide the best supportive environment for me. They have also been pivotal in coordinating the safe and supportive connection between myself and children and families who need assistance.
Allie B, Foster carer

We need foster carers to offer:

  • Emergency/overnight care, which provides accommodation and care for a child or young person in an emergency.
  • Weekend respite, looking after children and young people living with a foster care family for occasional or regularly scheduled weekends.
  • Short-term care, which ranges from a few days to a few months, depending on the child or young person’s needs.
  • Long-term care, when the child or young person is not expected to return to their family.

The first step is getting in touch. We can answer all your questions and help you make an informed decision about taking the next step.

Enquire today about becoming a foster carer

How do I become a Foster Carer? There are six steps that you need to follow.

Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster Carer
Step 1 - Get in touch

Register your interest and we’ll give you a call about becoming a foster carer.

Get in touch today
Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster Carer
Step 2 – Attend an Information Session

Learn about becoming a foster carer and receive information to help you make an informed decision.

About Information Sessions
Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster Carer
Step 3 – Attend Shared Lives training

Receive information about fostering children and child safety as well as a range of comprehensive resources to support you throughout your foster care journey.

Training Information
Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster Carer
Step 4 – Complete accreditation

To ensure the safety of children in care, part of the assessment will include Health Checks, National Police Check, Working with Children Check and a Home and Environment Check.

Accreditation training information
Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster Carer
Step 5 – Take part in home visits and assessments

This involves interviews with you and everyone who lives in your home. A detailed assessment report is submitted to an approval panel for review. Once accredited, we will match you with a child or young person and provide you with ongoing support.

Home visits information
Foster Carer Steps Become a Foster-Carer
Step 6 – Ongoing support

We will visit you at least monthly if not more as required. Help you with difficult placements as needed. Make sure your registration with regulatory authorities are up-to-date and will provide you with ongoing training.

Ongoing support information

Helping Carers Helping Kids podcast

Helping Carers Helping Kids is a podcast series curated by the Victorian Department of Families, Fairness and Housing. It provides additional information and insights on a range of topics to help foster and kinship carers in their important role.

Contact us today to enquire about Foster Care or Kinship Care.

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What can Baptcare do for you?

Below is a list of our value standards:

Client Centred and Safe
We are child centred and family focused. We value your individual interests and goals. We respect your right to participate in and guide planning, decisions and actions affecting your lives.
Listening to you, we identify common purpose. Working with you, we support you to reach your goals. Our team will always support you for better outcomes
Evidence-Based Best Practice
We provide supports, therapies and practices tailored to you, based on your needs. Staff are continually learning new skills to support you with outcomes that are responsive, flexible and timely.
Celebrate Diversity
Everyone is different – and we celebrate our differences. We include and celebrate all people to ensure safety and wellbeing.
We are assessed and accredited by state governments to ensure we are a suitable organisation to care for children.
Optimistic and Genuine
Staff are honest and open with you, and will assist you to ensure the best available outcomes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Who is Baptcare?

Baptcare is a not-for-profit community organisation dedicated to helping people through providing care, life skills and opportunities for independence and self-determination. We are a QIP (Quality Innovation Performance Limited is a not-for-profit health promotion charity with more than twenty years’ experience in community service accreditation and more than ten years’ experience in primary and secondary health care accreditation and related services.accredited service provider and are proud of the work we do to aid and improve our communities.

Where does Baptcare operate Foster and Kinship Care services?

Baptcare’s Foster and Kinship Care services are currently offered in Victoria and Tasmania. In Victoria we operate in Western Melbourne, and parts of North Melbourne, while in Tasmania our services cover the entire state. For more information, please see our pages on ‘Foster Care in Victoria’ and ‘Foster Care in Tasmania’.

Can I work with children from my culture?

Where possible, we aim to support placements within cultures. Being able to speak the same language as a young person can have positive outcomes. Children’s wellbeing is enhanced by learning and understanding their culture, and your ability to help teach a child about their cultural heritage is highly valued.

What do I need to do to become a foster carer?

The amount of time it takes to become accredited as a foster carer really depends on your availability, and your location (requirements vary from state to state) but on average it takes between three and six months. During this time, you will undergo police and working with children checks, as well as complete training on caring for children in foster care. You’ll be guided through the process every step of the way. We understand if at any stage you decide foster caring isn’t for you, or the timing just isn’t right – there are no hard feelings.

To learn more about becoming a foster carer, see our page ‘Steps to Becoming A Foster Carer’

How does it work if I have children of my own?

Many of our carers have children of their own and are accredited based on the best fit for their family. We provide information and training to your all household members, including biological children. Fostering can be a wonderful learning experience for the whole family.

What kind of support or assistance will I receive?

You’ll be guided personally through the application process by one of our staff and once accredited, you’ll have 24/7 support. You will also have access to continual training relevant to the needs of the young person you are caring for. For more information visit the Foster Care Association of Victoria or Foster and Kinship Carers Association of Tasmania .

Will I receive financial assistance?

Every placement is different, but carers do receive a standard carer reimbursement payment. There may be extra allowances depending on the needs of the child.
For more information visit Victorian Government DFFH or Tasmanian Government Dept of Communities.

Do I get a say in the children I foster?

You’re accredited based on the age, gender and type of care you choose to provide, and our case workers will always call you to discuss a placement before it goes ahead.

On average, how long does a child stay with you?

The length of time a child stays with you will depend on your level of accreditation and current circumstances. For example, if you’re accredited for respite care a child may stay with you for one weekend a month. If it’s for emergency it could be overnight or longer, depending on your availability.

What happens if I can no longer do the role, or need to take a break?

We understand that personal circumstances can change. Sometimes our carers take time off, move interstate or focus on having children of their own. It’s as simple as making a call to your case worker to discuss your needs.

What are the foster care service standards?

Just as you have been screened and assessed as a suitable carer, we are assessed and monitored by the Government to ensure we are a suitable organisation to care for children. You might hear this process referred to as licensing, accreditation, registration, or certification.
Service Standards
The criteria for the licensing of a foster care service vary between states, but mainly focus on the ability to
Provide information to children, particularly about accessibility, policies and procedures, complaints, and appeals processes
Ensure children participate in decisions affecting them, and are involved in services they receive
Uphold the rights of children
Keep children connected to family, and involve families in their children’s lives
Keep children connected to their culture and identity
Comply with standards for care environments
Recruit, assess, train, approve, support, monitor, and supervise carers
Manage children’s records
Maintain records about carers, employees, contractors, and volunteers
Maintain reporting systems, particularly breaches of standards and incidents involving harm to children
Meet guidelines relating to financial management

Get in touch


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Get in touch