Fostering Advisor

  • Hassocks
  • Polaris Community
Fostering Advisor Salary: £22,000 - £26,000 (dependent on experience) Core Hours: 9am - 5pm Office Location: Albourne, West Sussex Benefits: £3,000 Car Allowance, 30 days' Annual Leave (increasing to 35 days with length of service) + Bank Holidays, Company Pension, Life Assurance, Employee Discount Scheme & Medical Cash About Us Set up in 1987 by a small but passionate group of Foster Parents, we became the UK's first independent Foster Care agency. That gives us the benefit of over 30 years' of fostering experience and we're still going strong! The founder members recognised that looked after children - especially those who'd had very difficult starts in life - needed specialist support. So right from the beginning they put the child at the centre of their thinking and surrounded them with an integrated range of support services. In fact, that's what ISP means: Integrated Service Programme. Over time, this circle of support has increased to include a whole range of professionals that children and foster parents can tap into, whenever they need to. This includes social workers, fostering advisors, teachers and therapists, who all work with our foster parents and the children they look after, helping them understand and manage even the most challenging situations. This is what's known as a 'therapeutic approach' to fostering and it's something that we pioneered. What we are looking for Like our children, foster parents need support, encouragement and practical advice and sometimes just someone to listen. The Fostering Advisors in our teams are key to all of the support required to our foster parents and this critical role will be accountable for regularly visiting foster parents, offering advice and information regarding all the services and support available to them at ISP, Including matching considerations, respite, training, supervised contact, and transportation. Role responsibilities To have regular phone contact with foster parents to discuss general progress and to share ideas and strategies To make home visits agreed with the ISP Social Worker and Centre Manager To provide foster parents with information and advice, as appropriate, on support and services available to them through ISP and the Fostering Network, especially information and procedures to be followed if an allegation or complaint is made. To co-ordinate training for foster parents To be actively involved with: Contact arrangements and supervised contact Respite and transport arrangements, and to transport children directly where required TSDS Training Crisis intervention Matching considerations To support children and young people in their leisure activities To assist in facilitating discussion groups and presentations at the Centre, including attending discussions groups and team meetings To maintain accurate, comprehensive and up to date records as required To be conversant with applicable regulations and standards To undertake other duties, tasks or projects as requested by the Centre Manager Work as an effective team member and attend other ISP events, e.g. programme meetings. What you will need Understanding of Fostering regulations and standards i.e. the Children's Act & Fostering Service National Minimum Standards Some first-hand knowledge or experience of Fostering, ideally as a foster parent or as part of a Fostering family Previous experience or a want to work in a therapeutic model of child care Previous experience of providing support to foster parents and young people Good understanding of Attachment and working within a therapeutic model Ability to recognise people who foster as professionals and challenge appropriately where necessary in a way that is effective and sustains the relationship Ability to build good working relationships with professionals from various disciplines Intermediate IT skills to include Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint) and experience of using spreadsheets and databases Experience of planning, organising and prioritising workloads to meet deadlines and service requirements Commitment to developing positive working relationships with other staff, outside agencies, our children & young people and foster parents A full driving licence, unrestricted access to your own vehicle and confidence driving across the region The successful candidate will be required to complete an enhanced DBS Check, cost of which will be met by ISP. ISP is an equal opportunities employer and positively encourages applications from suitably qualified and eligible candidates. ISP is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults and expects all staff to share this commitment.