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We’re part of the Local Community Fostering service – a network of six northeast London boroughs with an ambition to inspire more people from all walks of life, to become foster carers.

The Local Community Fostering service is dedicated to supporting you on your journey to becoming a local authority foster carer. We want to hear from you whether you’re just considering fostering for the first time and want to learn more, or if you’re an experienced carer looking to transfer from an independent fostering agency. We are always looking for carers from a variety of backgrounds regardless of age, ethnicity, religion, sexuality or marital or employment status.

Visit Local Community Fostering and complete the short form, or call 020 8496 3437. A member of our friendly Local Fostering Community team will be in touch at a convenient time to have an initial chat about fostering with Waltham Forest.


Girl on swing

Why become a foster carer?

We do not need to know the beginning of a child’s story to change the ending

Fi Newood, Foster parent and author

  1. Pay of up to £554 per week per child which includes your fee in recognition of your skills
  2. Up to 66 per cent off your Council Tax bill if you live in Waltham Forest or a payment toward your Council Tax if you live out of the Borough
  3. Discounted membership at any of our six leisure centres in Waltham Forest for you and your family
  4. Outstanding preparation and on-going training (Ofsted commended)
  5. A dedicated Social Worker and out of hours support

Case studies

  • Vince's story

    Vince has been a foster carer for 3 years. He said, “It’s a lovely achievement to know we’ve given him a better quality of life.”

    Read more
  • Eman's story

    " I have been fostering for over 17 years."


    Read more
  • Shqiponja

    Shqiponja has been a foster carer for five years and has looked after a young refugee from Afghanistan.

    Read more

The process to become a Foster Carer

The process to becoming a Foster Carer can take four to six months. We will support you through every step of your fostering journey with us, from application through to approval.

All applicants go through a two stage process to become an accredited foster carer. We have outlined the stages below that explain how you can become a Waltham Forest foster carer. 

Stage 1, steps 1 to 3 can take up to 2 months

Stage2, steps 4 to 6 can take up to 4 months

Step 1


It's easy. Fill in our online enquiry form, email or call 020 8496 3437

Step 2


An appointment with a social worker may be offered to you to discuss the fostering process further, view original proof of your identity, complete a formal application form and for us to find out a little more about you.

Step 3

Attend Training Programme

If we are happy and you are happy you may be invited to join the virtual ‘Skills to Foster’ one day training programme. This is designed to prepare you for the role of becoming a foster carer and provide you with the opportunity to decide if this is right for you. There will be some fast track cases where stage two begins after the appointment.

Step 4


On successful completion of the 'Skills to Foster' training your home assessment will start. You will have approximately six to eight prearranged visits with a dedicated social worker to complete your fostering assessment.

Step 5

Agreement Assessment

You and your social worker will attend the Waltham Forest fostering panel where your approval will be considered. The panel will make a recommendation to the Agency Decision Maker who makes a final decision about whether to approve your application to become a foster carer. Once you are approved, we will sign an agreement with you, setting out your responsibilities as a foster carer and our duties to support you.

Step 6


Your dedicated social worker will continue to provide you with ongoing support as well as training and development opportunities. You will attend support groups and workshops and have links to other support such as Waltham Forest Foster Carers Association and the Fostering Network (the National body for Foster Carers for advice and support).