Can You Work Full-Time And Foster?

Anglicare Victoria is one of Australia’s leading foster care programs, helping vulnerable children find safe, nurturing homes when they need them the most.

One question that gets asked a lot is whether or not you can work full-time and still be a foster carer in Victoria.

In this post, the team at Anglicare Victoria tell us everything we need to know about balancing foster care with work commitments.

Victorians can work full-time and still be foster carers

The great news is that you can certainly still become a foster carer if you work full-time. While there needs to be a balance between work life and the capacity to provide support to a foster child, working full-time isn’t necessarily a barrier to becoming a foster carer.

This is something that will be assessed during your application. For example, if you work long hours and often have to work overtime, then this may have an effect on your suitability for foster care. Whereas standard working hours, are less likely to interfere with your ability to be a foster carer.

Foster carers who work full-time can be beneficial to foster kids

There can be a benefit in working full-time while taking on the role of a foster carer. For example, your foster child may benefit from seeing their foster parent working and providing for them, leading by example and encouraging a good work ethic. Through this, they may learn about the importance of hard work, responsibility, determination and pursuing success.

Balancing work and foster care

Foster care is like anything in life – it needs to be balanced with other commitments. There are plenty of ways to find balance between full-time work and foster care:

  • Set limits
    It’s not uncommon for Australians to work more than their scheduled amount of hours. Replying to that one work email, taking that one phone call, filling in that one piece of paperwork you didn’t get around to; it all adds up. Setting boundaries for work is important as a foster carer – it helps you ensure you’re dedicating enough time to your foster child.
  • Reducing hours
    Some people decide to reduce the amount of hours they work when they become a foster carer. This is a completely personal choice, and one that you must decide for yourself. Some foster carers find that they love the role so much that it brings them more joy to reduce work hours and invest more time into foster caring.

Other considerations for deciding on becoming a foster carer

While working full-time is an important consideration when deciding if foster care is right for you, it isn’t the only factor one should think about. Other considerations include:

  • Home and environment
    Thinking about your current home and family environment is important when becoming a foster carer. Each home is inspected for safety, hygiene and general suitability for foster care during the application process. Family members are also interviewed. It can be immensely beneficial for foster kids to be in a family environment with other ‘siblings’. Here, they get the chance to experience a functional family unit, and make connections with older and younger siblings, helping their emotional development.
  • Experience with children
    Having experience with children can definitely help when enrolling in foster care. Whether you’ve worked around kids, been a hands on grandparent, aunty or uncle or raised children of your own, this experience will help guide you through the journey of foster care. If you haven’t had much experience with children, don’t worry; it’s not mandatory, and there have been plenty of foster carers who initially lacked experience with children before becoming highly-trained foster carers.

Contact your local agency today

Whether you’re working part time, full time or not working, Anglicare Victoria invites you to start the foster care application process. If you’re passionate about making a significant impact in your local community, Anglicare Victoria is your first point of call. If you’re interested in becoming a foster carer, contact our Carer Recruitment Team and enquire about applying today.

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