BECOME A CARER!
Find out how you can make a difference and become a foster carer with us
WHATS INVOLVED IN BECOMING A FOSTER CARER- PROBITY CHECKS, CARER ASSESSMENT AND TRAINING
To start your foster care application you will be required to provide:
- National Police Check Clearance*
- NSW Working With Children's Check clearance*
- Community Services Check*
- Home safety check and pool compliance
-Medical clearance from your GP
-Two personal referees
*This is a requirement for all carers and any household member aged 16-18 years
What’s involved in becoming a foster Carer with Narang Bir-rong Aboriginal Corporation?
The foster care assessment process is generally a 6-8-month process to become a carer; from training to assessment. Applicants must complete a two-day core foster Carer training course and complete 4-5 assessment sessions in their home, where we spend time with the applicants talking about their capacity to care for a child in foster care; including their own life experience and what they have to offer a child in foster care. Children residing in the home will also be interviewed as part of this process.
Every foster care application is recorded on the NSW Carers Register. The NSW Carers Register is a centralised database of persons who are authorised, or who apply for authorisation, to provide statutory or supported out-of-home care in NSW. Its is run by the Office of the Children's Guardian with the intent of promoting the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children and young people in statutory or supported out-of-home care by supporting the appropriate authorisation of carers.
TYPES OF FOSTER CARE PLACEMENTS
There are three main types of foster care available through Narang Bir-rong. Those are crisis care, long term care and respite care.
Crisis/ Short term care: for those children who have recently entered or require an urgent placement while restoration to birth parents or family options are bring sought.
Long Term care: for those children who currently are not able to return home to family therefore require a long-term foster family who is able to raise that child until they are independent, usual 18 years and beyond.
Respite care: when children in the care system periodically require respite from their current placements, usually over a weekend or during the school holidays.
The best placements however offer a combination of care and therefore are able to provide some form of permanency whether that be Long term or Short term to the child which always provides the best outcome for children.
Narang Bir-rong Aboriginal Corporation does not support guardianship, dual authorised carers, parental responsibility to family members or non relatives, nor do we facilitate or support adoption of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people.
WHO CAN FOSTER WITH NARANG BIR-RONG ABORIGINAL ORGANISATION?
Opening your home is a big commitment. Carers must have an understanding of Aboriginal culture, child development, trauma, behaviour management, attachment and grief and loss.
We encourage people from all walks of life to apply to become a foster carer. You need to be between the ages of 21-65 and must be an Australian citizen or resident. You can be single, married and of any sexual orientation. You can have children of your own or no children of your own. Narang Bir-rong promotes the placement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children with people within their kinship line, Aboriginal community members and non-Aboriginal people who are culturally sound and can positively promote an Aboriginal child’s identity.
TEAM WORK AND CARER SUPPORT
Fostering a child can be a long hard journey, but not something you need to undertake alone. Our caseworkers offer 24/7 support and further training opportunities to all our foster carers. We like to think of foster families as part of a larger Narang Bir-rong foster family, where we all work collaboratively together to support one another, promoting the sense of belonging and community.
Carers must have a willingness to work well within a part of a case managed team, that consist of the child's caseworker, manager, and all other service providers.
Click on our 'Contact Us' page to get in touch for an information pack or for more information over the phone!
WHY SHOULD PEOPLE APPLY TO BECOME A FOSTER CARER WITH NARANG BIR-RONG ABORIGINAL CORPORATION?
At Narang Bir-rong Aboriginal Corporation we are child focused and always promote what is in the best interest of the child and meeting their needs. However, we also see the 'big picture'. We provide consistent 24/7 support to our foster families and we offer constant training opportunities as well as advocacy and guidance. We are trauma informed and focused and don’t just see our client as a statistic but as a person who has individual needs.
WHAT MAKES A PLACEMENT WORK?
Placements work when carers:
Promote a sense of belonging into a family over ownership of a child
Allow they child time to heal
Advocate for the child
Are supportive of all aspects of the child’s life. In particular supportive of their family and identity
Show that consistency in all areas of care
Work well with the agency and their caseworker and a repour develops between the two parties
WHAT QUALITIES MAKE A GOOD CARER?
Good foster carers are ones who are compassionate, able to show love and communicate positive affection. They are carers who show our children a sense of belonging and generally have great senses of humour. Foster carers must be open and supportive of the child's right to birth family contact and an ability to positively promote the child's identity and belonging to two family networks.
Good foster carers have patience. Foster children come to every placement with extra 'luggage' that you cannot see; this is their trauma and their story. And although you might not ever get to hear their story, as they may be too young to tell you or might not remember, but their body will remember and therefore they exhibit behaviours that can push the boundaries. These children need time for their traumatised brain to rewire.
Aboriginal children in care need consistency in all areas of their life, whether it be routine, regular meals, boundaries or stability and in that consistency they will gradually over time start to feel safe again. Children will then be able to start to develop healthy relationships with their care givers and slowly they will be able to in return show love. This is something not all of our children are capable of showing because many of them over the years have built up a wall between their emotions and themselves, this ability of self-preservation allows the child to never have their feelings hurt.