Unannounced visits offer the opportunity to see foster carers and children (in their care) without planning a visit. This provides a snapshot of daily life in a more natural way to planned visits. It provides a monitoring process to see the child and carers in different circumstances to that of an expected supervision.

In this interactive session we will consider the important elements of an unannounced visit and how they differ to regular supervision, important elements that are likely to be considered, such as:

  • Health and safety
  • Seeing children alone
  • Assessing the home environment, including sleeping arrangements
  • Recording what you see - the importance of description
  • Action points - and ensuring highlighted tasks are undertaken

NMS 21.8 (England) - Each approved foster carer is supervised by a named, appropriately qualified social worker who has a meeting with the foster carer, including at least one unannounced visit a year.

Standard 5 - National Care Standards Scotland - The supervising social worker will visit in line with legal requirements. This includes at least one unannounced visit each year.

NMS - 22.6 (Wales) Supervising social workers meet regularly with foster carers. Meetings have a clear purpose and provide the opportunity to supervise the foster carers’ work. Foster carers’ files include records of supervisory meetings. There are occasional unannounced visits, at least one each year.

NAFP is developing good practice guidance for undertaking an unannounced visit - this conference will launch the guidance and work through the relevant points which will include:

  • The process for an unannounced visit
  • Why and who should undertake them, and undertaking more than the one unannounced visit a year
  • What should be considered and recorded - with an opportunity to complete one together
  • When they should be undertaken, and the relevance to them alongside other areas of supporting and monitoring foster carers
  • The importance of triangulation and good management oversight

(this event will be hosted on Zoom - accessibility; delegates will be emailed details of how to join a few days beforehand)

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