The short answer would be ‘yes’. It is not uncommon for foster carers to move from one provider to another; Chrysalis Care will, of course, help you through this process.
In terms of work status, as a foster carer, you are self-employed, so have the benefit of being at liberty to work within your chosen service and are not employed, as such. However, once you are ‘approved’ by a fostering agency, you are contracted to that agency, so are not at liberty to become approved elsewhere at the same time. This means that foster carers can only foster a child or young person from one referring agency or service.
There is a protocol and guidance which is summarised below and outlines the general process.
When there is no child in placement, the process is relatively straight-forward. You must give written notice to the existing fostering provider, telling them of your intention to move. Chrysalis Care begins their own assessment, once the written notice is given. Chrysalis Care will notify the existing provider of their intention to start an assessment and request a reference which should be provided within 28 days.
Where there is a child or children in placement, you must give written notice of intention to your existing provider and the Local Authority. On receipt of this notice, the placing authority shall convene a meeting of the placing authority(s), the recruiting provider and the foster carer.
The purpose of this meeting is primarily to ensure the continuity of care for children in placements and to minimise the length of time taken in the transfer process. The well being of the child or children in placement will always be a priority, although the intention is also to ensure that foster carers do not suffer a loss of income as a result of the transfer process.
For more information about Chrysalis Care, take a look at our About Us page.