Foster with us

Become a foster carer with Churches of Christ in Queensland

It takes a community to raise a child.

Unfortunately in Australia today, there are thousands of children and young people who, for a variety of reasons, are unable to remain living with their own parents. Whether they have been victims of abuse, neglect or a tragic accident involving their parents, these children need safe and nurturing environments to help them find a path to a brighter future. This is often provided by foster carers.

Foster carers play a vital role in transforming young lives. We are always seeking dedicated people who are willing to take on this rewarding role and make a difference for a lifetime.


Register now

Could you be a foster carer?

If you are thinking about becoming a foster carer, there are few questions you might want to ask:

  • Do you enjoy caring for children and young people?
  • Do you want to make a positive difference in a child or young person’s life?
  • Do you have time, energy and enthusiasm for children or young people?
  • Do you have a stable home environment?

If your answer is yes to all questions, then we would like to talk with you about becoming a foster carer. Please register to attend an upcoming information session or register now. and a member of our team will be in touch.

Types of foster care

We understand that not everyone has the ability to provide full-time care to children and young people. Foster carers are able to specify what type of care they wish to provide. These include:

  • Respite care – You care for a child or children, usually for one or two weekends a month, in order to give their full-time foster or kinship carer a break.
  • Emergency – Required when a child requires a placement immediately. Due to the nature of these placements, you may have very little notice before a child is placed with you.
  • Short-term – You may care for a child for a short period of time ranging from a few weeks up to two years. Children requiring this type of placement are usually working towards being returned home to a parent at the end of the foster care placement.
  • Long-term – Children requiring this type of placement are in the long-term care of the department and are unlikely to return home to their family.

Caring for a foster child

What to expect

Being a foster carer is a very special responsibility. Whilst there is no particular model or blueprint required to be a foster carer, it is essential that you relate well to children and can provide a safe and secure home for them. All our prospective carers receive specialised training, and we work closely with you to determine your readiness and suitability for foster care.

Once approved as a foster carer, you are matched with children according to your household’s capacity and the child’s age group, needs and other factors determined at the time of assessment.

Fostering is a rewarding but often challenging journey. The children and young people have all had some kind of adversity in their lives. Helping them overcome these challenges requires a lot of patience, love and consistent care. It is not always easy to build relationships with children or young people who may find it difficult to trust. However, over time, attachments form and the stable home you are able to provide will be the therapeutic environment that helps them to heal, grow and develop. It is incredibly worthwhile when you see and experience positive change in the life of a child or young person.

Support and training available

Your local Churches of Christ in Queensland service will allocate a support worker who visits regularly and offers 24 hour on-call assistance for emergencies. You will receive a monthly newsletter and access to resources, such as books, DVDs and toys. Apart from the initial training, there are ongoing training and development opportunities. Many services also have regular carer support groups and offer social events, such as the Foster and Kinship Care Week events and a Christmas party.

What do I need?

Foster carers need to be in reasonable health, have a safe home for children, and be able to obtain a Blue Card (suitability for working with children check).

The most important requirements for any potential foster carer are the commitment to the care and welfare of children and young people, willingness to work as part of a team and time availability.

Foster carers talk about foster care

Why did I become a foster carer?

"We felt that we had a lot to offer.  We had the room for children and wanted to do something to help kids who are in need."

"We wanted to be able to give children somewhere to come on the weekends where they could enjoy themselves. And we also wanted to feel needed and that we weren’t “past it”.

What has fostering given me?

"Love of the children and the feeling that we are doing something special."

"My husband and I are seniors so, by providing weekend short breaks, we feel that we can offer a 'grandparent experience' to kids in care. And it makes us feel that we have something important to contribute."

What was the impact on my family?

"Even though it has been hard for them to accept new children in the household initially, a lot of communication has helped us to grow as a family. Our own children have learned to be very compassionate towards others."

"My husband and I love having the children on weekends and we know that we are providing respite for the primary carers."

What is it like when children move on?

"We love reunification – love having the children here, helping them, and handing them back to family at the end of this... and the closure that it gives you."

"It can be really sad when children move on, and you do worry about them, but you know that you have had a good input into their lives."

How was the training and support provided by Churches of Christ Care?

"I am very happy with our support worker – we would not be doing it without the support they give us. We enjoy attending the carer support group where there is usually a short training topic."

"We are happy with our case worker. We can always phone-in between visits if there is anything we need. We really enjoy the carer events where we get to meet and talk to other carers."

What are the challenges?

"We have had some children with behavioural issues, which has been challenging.  But we have had support, and training is available to help us understand what is behind the behaviour and how to deal with it."

"The biggest challenge is in gaining the trust of the young people. But with humour and kindness, they usually respond well."

How do I become a foster carer?

The first step to becoming a foster carer with Churches of Christ Care is to call us on 1800 222 273 or register your interest here. You can also book a spot at an information session currently being held in your area. Our team is more than happy to provide you with more details about fostering and guide you through the next steps.

Register now

If you decide that you would like to progress further to becoming a foster carer, Churches of Christ Care will start the application process with you. It involves background checks and interviews with you and personal referees to ensure people who become carers have the skills and capabilities to look after children and young people in their care.

At every step of the way, Churches of Christ Care staff will provide all the training, support and guidance you need to be a foster carer.

Fostering with Churches of Christ Care

  • We are the largest non-government provider of foster care services in Queensland.
  • We provide excellent training and support.
  • We use the Sanctuary program, an international trauma informed model of care.
  • We place children and young people at the centre of all we do.
  • Our foster carers are an integral part of our team.
  • We have services across the State in urban, rural and remote locations.
  • We value diversity in our foster carers.
  • We are a faith-based organisation that provides non-denominational, holistic care.
  • We care for approximately 3,000 children and young people each year.
  • Our foster carers come from a wide range of ages, cultures and backgrounds.
  • Our foster carers are married, single, in a de facto relationship, from the LGBTI community, working full time or stay at home.

Staying connected through culture

Children stay connected to culture through their community and a strong cultural identity helps them to become resilient adults and to cope with life’s joys and sorrows.

When a foster carer opens their heart and home and provides a culturally safe environment it helps Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people to:

  • develop cultural identity
  • build resilience
  • build self esteem
  • improve coping mechanisms
  • maintain trusted cultural connections
  • heals spirits

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children have the right to be safe, grow in a loving and caring family environment and be connected to culture, clan and community.  Culture plays a key role in the child’s development, Children with a strong cultural identity are more likely to become resilient adults who can cope with life’s joys and sorrows.

We aim to match children with families who share their culture, currently 46% of children in out-of-home care identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander and we do not have enough Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers who can share their culture to meet the need of children and young people.  We need more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families to become foster carers, if you have thought about becoming a foster carer, attend an information session  or make an enquiry today. 

Supporting culture and connection is a a responsibility we all share. As a foster caring there are many ways you can support cultural connections for  children and young people in your care.  

 

Frequently asked questions

Foster care provides children and young people aged 0 to 17 years, who cannot live with their families, the opportunity to live in a safe and nurturing home environment.  Depending on the child or young person’s circumstances, they may need to be in foster care for a few nights or for a number of years.