We started the adoption process with St Andrew’s Children’s Society during the first lockdown in 2020. Our initial contact was via a Virtual Adoption Information Evening followed by us doing all our training online over Zoom with our amazing social worker taking (supporting) us through the process.
The role of the family finder
We completed our training and were approved to adopt and six short weeks later we received a very special call……
We were approached by a family finder from a council in England. A family finder is a role in many councils that have social workers looking on behalf of children to find suitable potential adopters by searching the profiles of the adopters that have been approved to adopt. They are trying to find the right family to match the needs of the child or children. This family finder had seen our profile on the UK matching website and asked us to look at the profile for a sibling group.
What is an adoption activity day?
Having looked at the profiles and shown interest we were invited to go to attend an adoption activity day in London to meet the children. These adoption activity days are set up to allow potential adopters to go and meet children along with their foster parents and social workers in a relaxed environment. In all honesty, we were nervous about this, feeling that it might be really forced. This was also our first trip outside Scotland since Covid and we required permission to travel letters to allow us to go to a strangely quiet London.
The adoption activity day was well organised
The day itself was really well organised by Coram BAAF, an independent membership organisation for professionals, foster carers and adopters. When we arrived on the day, we were given brief profiles of all the children who were attending that day and time to read them.
The children were well cared for
The children there were in the care of their foster parents and it was a really relaxed environment where you could go and spend time with various children. There were play activities for the children both indoors and outside as it was a sunny day and this meant that people could interact and play with the children rather than just watching them. There was also a children’s entertainer and snacks for the children to keep them amused.
We started to really bond with the children
As we had been invited specifically to see the sibling group who have now become our children, we clearly spent most of our time with them. When it was finally time to be introduced to the children we nervously approached the foster family, introduced ourselves and they were very welcoming and were able to answer all of our questions as it is difficult to really get to know what children are like through a profile. During the day we were there for a few hours which gave us good time to interact with the children properly and meet with their social workers and foster parents. As it came to the time to leave we really struggled to say goodbye as we felt there was the start of a real bond with the children.
Why you should attend an adoption activity day too
We couldn’t recommend highly enough taking up the opportunity of attending an adoption activity day as it really does give the chance to meet many children and their support network. It also gives you a much better understanding of the children than you can get from reading a profile on paper and it gives you a chance to ask questions of the people looking after the children and who know them best. Also, we would recommend anyone taking contact from family finders seriously as they spend a lot of time researching adopters’ profiles and looking for good matches for the children and we have been blessed by our interactions with them.
Finally good luck with your adoption journey – it is an amazing process both for you as adopters and also for the children.
T&B (adoptive parents of two wonderful children!).
If you would like to find out more about adopting or fostering a child through St Andrew’s Children’s Society please call 0131 454 3370 or email email@example.com.
This blog post was written by a couple who adopted siblings through St Andrew’s Children’s Society.