Foster carers and adopters in Norfolk are working together to support children who are moving from foster care to adoption.
The pilot project, Moving to Adoption, suggests foster carers and adopters spend time together as a child approaches adoption, giving adopters the chance to better understand their child’s needs to ensure they get the right support before moving in to their new home.
Norfolk County Council is partnering with the University of East Anglia (UEA) on the project, which supports practice that prioritises children’s emotional needs, whilst also supporting the foster carers and adopters.
UEA has developed a special checklist for foster carers to complete, detailing important information about the child’s emotional needs, such as how they might show or conceal their feelings if they are angry or anxious.
The information is then passed on to the new family so they can better recognise how their child communicates and can plan better for their arrival.
Chairman of the children’s services committee at Norfolk County Council, Penny Carpenter said: “This is an innovative way of gently easing in the adoptive parents, so that we a have smooth transition for the child and the new parents feel fully supported.
“The new working gives adopters the chance to work much more closely with the child’s foster carers and to really understand the child’s needs before they join their family. y working with UEA we know that the new approach will be well-researched and evaluated so that we can see what works well.”