By Laura Harman published
A progressive new national adoption strategy will be introduced in England as the government invests £48 million into adoption services.
The new government scheme has been introduced to update adoption services in England. This funding will break down barriers and misconceptions about adoption and will provide post-adoption support, therapy and activities.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said, "There is no substitute for a loving, permanent family. A stable family unit is key to boosting life chances and there are so many adoptive parents across the country who have opened their homes and hearts to some of our most vulnerable children, often with very challenging backgrounds."
In light of this statement, the Education Secretary went on to announce what the money from the government will target when improving adoption services in the UK.
"We are committed to improving adoption services, as well as breaking down barriers so that parents from all walks of life can adopt and to ensure they are not deterred from adopting simply because of their background," he said.
As well as making it easier for people from a variety of different backgrounds to adopt, the education secretary went on to say that a new strategy also aims to match children with families based on something more substantial than just location.
"We have taken steps to ensure these children and young people can be matched with the families that are right for them, but we know there is more to do and this strategy sets out our vision for radically improving systems so that we can be confident that every adoptive family in England is receiving the same high-quality service no matter where they live," he said.
The government likened the previous adoption services in England to a 'postcode lottery' that was primarily determined by location.
The government states that this new framework of national standards and practices will be introduced to end "the ‘postcode lottery’ that too often means the quality of adoption services depend on where a child or adopter lives."
The governmental press release also said that, although the wait time for children to be adopted has improved over the years, it is still a long time for a young child to wait to find a home, and needs improving.
Children are still waiting to be adopted for an average of 15 months. This is the average time for a child going into care and then being placed with a new family. This number was significantly higher in 2012 however when the average wait time was measured at 22 months.
The new strategy is also targeting adoptive parents from different ethnic minorities. This is part of a wider scheme that clarifies that "adopters should never be deterred from pursuing an opportunity to adopt because of their social background, ethnicity, sexuality, or age." The scheme also reveals that councils will be advised to prioritize adopters and help them provide stable homes to their new family members.
This new scheme has had an overwhelmingly positive reaction from people who are working within adoption services in England.
Dr. Carol Homden, CEO of Coram, said, "As the only voluntary sector leader of one of the country’s largest regional adoption agencies, Coram welcomes the government’s commitment to ensuring that children and adopters from all walks of life who come forward to provide the loving homes they need have consistent high-quality services no matter where they live in England."
Lucy Peake, CEO of Kinship, also said, "Kinship carers have stepped up to raise 150,000 children in England, keeping them within family networks and out of the care system. It is life-changing and often challenging.
"We warmly welcome this funding which will mean that many more kinship carers will be able to access advice and peer support when they need it, helping them provide stable and loving care for vulnerable children."
Laura is a news writer for woman&home who primarily covers entertainment and celebrity news. Laura dabbles in lifestyle, royal, beauty, and fashion news, and loves to cover anything and everything to do with television and film. She is also passionate about feminism and equality and loves writing about gender issues and feminist literature.
Laura loves drinking and eating and can often be found trying to get reservations at London's trendiest restaurants. When she's not wining and dining, Laura can also be found travelling, baking, and hiking with her dog.
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