The role of your supervising social worker

Foster carers have a supervising social worker to ensure that they are supported.

Every foster carer has a supervising social worker allocated to them to support, advise and guide in every aspect of fostering.

A supervising social worker will:

  • keep in frequent touch with you, your family and children or young people in placement through regular visits and telephone calls
  • arrange for any additional support services needed
  • support you with attending meetings, writing reports, keeping records etc.
  • support you and help you to manage contact between the child/children and their birth relatives
  • identify foster carer training needs and help you to achieve your learning and development objectives
  • keep careful records of the progress of children placed with you
  • make all the necessary statutory visits.

Your social worker might be the same person who worked with you during your assessment to become a foster carer or it might be someone new.

Your supervising social worker also works alongside the child's social worker. They will work with you on matching a child who fits with your terms of approval and also fits with you and your family.

These social workers will keep in touch with the children/young person placed with you throughout their placement, make statutory visits, and make care planning decisions with and for them.

Your supervising social worker will carry out a review after your first year of fostering called an annual foster carer review.

Annual foster carer review

We will arrange a review of your first year as foster carer - this will take place with your supervising social worker. This takes place with your supervising social worker and is then presented to the fostering panel to review how your first year has been. This process is part of the Fostering Services Regulations. The review must take place no more than a year after approval and we continue these reviews on an annual basis from then on.

The review is an opportunity to change your approval status. For instance, you may decide that you can increase the number of children you foster or you may choose a different fostering scheme. Annual foster carer reviews are also a formal opportunity for you to give feedback to the panel, both positive and negative, about your year in fostering.