Age range of fostering applicants

The minimum age to become a foster carer is 21. Any applicants who are relatively young are expected to have experience of foster care – so for example, an applicant who has grown up in a fostering household and/or has family members who are foster carers may be accepted for assessment from age 21.

There is no maximum age for fostering; the determining factor for application is health and predicted health over the next few years. Older applicants who are in good health and have enough energy to care for children are more likely to be accepted to foster than younger applicants with health problems which affect their general health and ability to care for children. Older applicants should be mindful that Sparks Fostering does not accept applications from foster carers who are only available for emergency or respite carers, so we expect our foster carers to be available to care for children for a number of years, perhaps into adulthood. For this reason, older foster carers are likely to have older children (teenagers) matched with them.