Milestone reached as adoption support website launched.
Six hundred matches have been made between children in care and prospective adoptive parents since 2011 - the equivalent of more than one a week.
The milestone comes after the 600th young person was matched with adopters via Scotland’s Adoption Register.
The Register is an online database which facilitates matching between looked after children and prospective adopters. Established in 2011, the Register acts a central point for local authorities ensuring prospective adoptive parents go through a robust and supportive matching process in order to best meet the needs of both the child and their potential families.
A new website from Adoption UK Scotland, funded by the Scottish Government, has also been launched which offers key advice and guidance for current and prospective adoptive parents.
Minister for Children and Young People Maree Todd said:
“We know that adoption has the potential to completely change the direction of a child or young person’s life by providing them with a loving, supportive and permanent home and family.
“Reaching this milestone means that there are 600 fewer children in care, having been placed with families who offer the most supportive and stable home they possibly can.
“We now know more than ever before about what it takes to ensure adoption matches are successful and our new website will act as a vital portal for current and prospective adoptive parents. The website is the first online resource in Scotland to provide a single point of information for prospective adopters, adoptive families and professionals working within the adoption sector – ensuring that the guidance and support they need pre and post adoption is available to them. I would encourage anyone with an interest in adoption to visit the site and find out more.”
Robin Duncan, Manager of Scotland’s Adoption Register, said:
“The Register is all about helping find families for children when it has been decided that adoption gives them the best chance of growing up in a safe, secure and loving home.
“The statistics are less important than the stories of the children and families involved, but the milestone of 600 matches is a really heartening sign of how well the Register is working and how it continues to create good solutions for some of Scotland’s most vulnerable children.”
Parents Stevan and Denis, who have been through the adoption process, said:
“We started our adoption journey 5 years ago. We went through the numerous stages of the process: preparation group, home study and then onto our approval panel. After approval, the family finding started. Using a portal such as Scotland’s Adoption Register was at times tough due to the huge amount of children that are profiled but it did lead to us finding our two little boys and we fell in love at the first glance of their profile!
“The next step was meeting our sons, which was a huge bag of mixed emotions. The first day of introductions with the boys went amazingly well, we only got to spend a few hours with them but being called Dad and Daddy for the first time brought tears to our eyes! The remaining days of introductions flew by and before we knew it we had our boys home and family life began.
“After a while parenthood started to become more natural to us and routines were put in place which quickly helped the boys thrive and we haven’t looked back since. Every day we count our blessings to have two gorgeous, happy boys. Adoption was everything we could have of hoped for and more! Even through the tears, tantrums and sibling squabbles, we wouldn’t change it for the world.”
Last year the Scottish Government continued its efforts to improve the adoption process for everyone, by provided more than £500,000 directly to adoption stakeholders:
- £240,000 to St Andrews Children’s Society to maintain and expand Scotland's Adoption Register
- £98,000 to AFAS to maintain services to professionals and practitioners in the adoption sector
- £75,000 to Adoption UK (Scotland) to provide a national helpline and support for adoptive families in Scotland
- £55,000 per annum to Birthlink in order to provide and maintain the Adoption Contact Register for Scotland
- £40,000 to St Andrews Children’s Society to support adoptive families, both during and after the adoption process
Scotland’s Adoption Register is funded by the Scottish Government and currently hosted by St Andrew’s Children’s Society. The Register has a remit to facilitate family finding across Scotland with the aim of increasing the numbers of children that are placed for adoption and to make the linking and matching process work as well as possible for children and prospective adopters.