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Could you be a foster carer and help us support children, young people and families in times of need and when in crisis?

In some circumstances, it's best that children and young people are looked after by someone else for a while and this is where you could help.

A foster carer is someone who looks after children on an emergency, temporary, long term, permanent, or emergency respite basis.

We are looking for people who want to care for all ages of children including babies, toddlers, primary and secondary aged children. In addition to this, we are looking for carers able to provide a supported care arrangement to our 16 plus young people.

Call us now on 01292 267675 or contact us.


Who can become a foster carer?

People from a variety of backgrounds and experiences can become foster carers. The main qualities you need are patience, understanding, empathy and a kind, nurturing approach to looking after vulnerable children and young people.

You do not need to come from any particular walk of life; we are looking for different kinds of foster carers to help children with different needs. Here are some examples of the types of people who currently foster children and young people in South Ayrshire:

  • People that have raised or are raising their own family;
  • Those who don't have children of their own but want to care for children on a temporary basis (they may have experience of children in other settings, for example caring for nieces and nephews, child minding, or working with children);
  • Single people;
  • Couples including same sex couples;
  • People from different ethnic backgrounds;
  • Employed and unemployed carers.

View our FAQ section at the bottom of this page to find out more or contact us.


Assessment and preparation

When you express an interest in fostering and have had an initial visit from the social worker, you will be invited to attend preparation groups and provided there are no issues, you would progress to a full fostering assessment which should be completed within 6 months from your application. A social worker will visit you at home to carry out the assessment. Confidential enquiries will be made of your local social work department and you will be asked to provide three referees. All applicants need to have a medical examination and any health issues will need to be explored. Smoking and obesity are areas that also need to be explored. Under the current policy carers who smoke will not be offered placements of children under three years of age and this may be subject to review.

Anyone interested in applying to foster will be subject to a Disclosure (Scotland) check to find out if they have a criminal record and to check if they are on the list of people disqualified from working with children. A record of offences will need to be carefully looked into but, apart from some offences against children, will not necessarily rule you out from fostering.

At the end of your assessment, the social worker will present a full report to the agency's Adoption Panel who will consider your application and make a recommendation of your suitability to the agency decision maker. It is the role of the agency decision maker to consider whether or not to approve prospective foster carers and you would be notified in writing of his decision.


Fostering fees and allowances

Standard Fostering Weekly Rates
Age BandFeeAllowanceTotal weekly payment
0 to 4 years£197.00£168.31£365.31
5 to 10 years£197.00£195.81£392.81
11 to 15 years£197.00£201.00£398.00
16 to 18 years£197.00£268.41£465.41



If you would like to find out more about fostering, please contact:

Family Placement and Adoption Team
South Ayrshire Council
181 Whitletts Road

Tel: 01292 267675