We are all living with uncertainty since Covid-19 impacted all of our lives in 2020. We want to let you know that we are here for you, you matter to us. As Adoption Matters is primarily a home working organisation, we seized the opportunity to make the very most of the latest communication technology in keeping in touch with our families, prospective families, colleagues and friends last year and we continue to do so in 2021.
We want to assure you that:
We are still open. Adoption Matters is firmly committed to the health and safety of our staff, our families and the colleagues we work with across the UK. We are closely monitoring the ever changing situation and complying with the latest Government and public health guidance and we closed our 8 offices and all of our staff are now home based. We are here Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm (often outside of these times too, through arranged virtual meetings, our online chat or social media pages), we can talk to you, email you, direct message or arrange a virtual video call. We are still here to support you and are offering a range of webinars through our Centre for Adoption Support which are available to view here: www.adoptionmatters.org/cfas#events. As Adoption Matters adopters you can also arrange a therapeutic consultation with an adoption support practitioner to discuss your support needs by contacting us via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your adoption journey can start and continue with us during restrictions. If you have been thinking about adoption for some time, contact us, we are here and we can use the latest technology to make contact with you. Children are still waiting for individuals and families to consider adoption. If you are in Stage 1 or 2 of your assessment with us, we are still continuing with our work. We can still process all our information securely and hold virtual panels. In some instances, where risk assessments and guidance allow, we are still holding some face to face meetings and visits. Some things maybe delayed such as certain checks and medicals, but we can and will still continue with a lot of our work now and pick up on tasks at a later date.
We are here to support you Through telephone support, virtually through video calls, virtual therapy sessions and webinars. We are still able to assist you with accessing birth records, tracing and intermediary services it may be difficult for us to access any historical records given the current restrictions, however we would endeavour to do so as soon as is possible, so please continue to make an enquiry with us. All of our staff are well set up to support you and experienced at working from home using secure technology.
We are here for you and the children waiting. We are working hard and closely with our Regional Adoption Agency and Local Authority colleagues to ensure that this crisis does not mean that children have to wait longer.
Thank you for helping us to continue our important work with children and families in these most challenging circumstances.
Norman G. Goodwin, CBE
Chief Executive, Adoption Matters
We have been asked a lot of questions from our enquirers over the last few weeks and we thought it would be helpful to summarise some frequently asked questions regarding Covid-19 (Coronavirus) and how we are working through the current lockdown restrictions.
Can we still apply to adopt with you during the lockdown?
Yes! We are still very much open for business with all of our staff working remotely at home. As lots of our staff were home workers before Covid-19, we were well set up to work 100% at home when the Government advice advised to do so. Your adoption journey can start and continue with us over the coming weeks and months If you have been thinking about adoption for some time, contact us, we are here and we can use the latest technology to make contact with you. Children are still waiting for individuals and families to consider adoption. If you are in Stage 1 or 2 of your assessment with us, we are still continuing with our work. While there may be a small number of checks and medicals that maybe delayed in lockdown but we can pick this up with you and we are also holding virtual adoption panels. We can still process all our information securely. So we can and still continue with a lot of our work now and pick up on tasks when this crisis is over.
How can we find out more information?
We would ask you in the first instance to download one of our adoption information packs here, which contains lots of vital information and explains the next steps if you wish to proceed. We are holding regular online information events in place of our usual information evenings across the country. The events are hosted by members of our experienced adoption social work team who will talk you through the process. There is no obligation on you if you sign up to the events other than to listen but you will get the opportunity to ask questions if you wish at the end. You can also contact speak to one of our social workers by phone 9:30-4:30 Monday to Friday and as well as some evenings listed our on website.
Are you still undertaking home visits?
We are following to the latest Government guidance on social distancing. We are offering phone calls, video calls using various secure platforms. This is working well for our enquirers, assessments and support to families and children. This is being reviewed on a regular basis in line with change guidance.
Are you still placing children for adoption?
Yes. We have placed and are still placing children with their adoptive families during the lockdown period. The children that we place for adoption and our adoptive families are central to all that we do and keeping everyone safe is really important to us. We are using risk assessments and ensuring we adhere to all social distancing guidelines. We are working closely with our Regional Adoption Agency colleagues across the country to ensure that this health crisis does not impact on children in care further by adding further delays for them. Children still need families, our work cannot and should not stop, supporting our adoptive families is our priority.
I am currently furloughed from my job and worried that my finances will affect my application to adopt.
There are many people in this position so please don’t let this deter you from contacting us. Financial security is part of our assessment but we are in unprecedented times working through this pandemic and we are taking this into consideration with our assessments. The needs of the children that need adoptive families are always paramount in our work so financial security does need to be considered but we will discuss this with you, just give us a call or drop us an email with your query.
I am currently furloughed from my job so have the time to enquire and/or apply but once lockdown is lifted, I will be working full time again. Can you fast track my assessment now while I am at home?
We have received enquiries from teachers and nursery workers who are now in this position. Our teams are working hard to ensure we offer all of our enquirers the best customer service we can during this lockdown period. We would not advise to ‘rush’ through any assessment as you also need the time to think about the process and also to talk with your family and friends for support, this is a life changing decision that you need time to digest and think about. We will of course try our best to capitalise on the fact you have more time at home. We will however also need to ensure that you still have the time to give to the assessment process once the lockdown restrictions are lifted.
I was thinking of enquiring but now my children are off school and I am not sure when they will return, what would you advise?
We know that trying to juggle life whilst your children are off school isn’t easy. The uncertainty of when they may return and their lack of routine is also unsettling. Every individual and family is different and we take the unique circumstances of each family into account with every enquiry so it’s hard to give advice that will cover everyone. If you wish to make enquiries now and then perhaps take things further once schools do re-open that’s fine or you can proceed if you feel you have the time. We would need to speak to any children as part of the assessment and we are doing this via video call – where possible, so we will be able to advise you further once we have spoken to you. Why not download an information pack or attend one of our online events and see if this helps you further.
I am in the vulnerable group, can I still enquire to adopt?
Yes. Adopters come from all walks of life and many adopters with ongoing health conditions or disabilities. As part of applying to adopt applicants have a medical that is usually conducted by their own G.P. During this lockdown period, applicants are being asked to self-report any medical conditions and medical examinations are being deferred until lockdown restrictions are lifted. Many health issues do not prevent people from adopting. In general, we are looking for people who are physically fit and well enough to manage the day to day challenges of adopting and who have the emotional wellbeing to cope with the stresses that applying to adopt and parenting an adopted child/ren through to adulthood can bring.
To download a no obligation adoption information pack, complete our short form here – a pack will be available to download immediately and a copy will also be emailed to you.
You can also contact our adoption advice line on Freephone: 0300 123 1066 or email us at: email@example.com We are holding online adoption information events throughout the lockdown period and whilst social distancing measures are in place, to view our online events visit our events page here.
Self-isolating at home, still working, juggling childcare and/or caring for relatives or just being at home alone. Adoption Matters want to stay social while distancing to help our families, prospective families and all of our friends and colleagues get through this challenging time we are all facing.
We are regularly updating our social media pages with lots of tips, hints, videos and details of all of our upcoming virtual events including adoption information events including our Adopting with Concurrent Planning Service, support events and fundraising events such as our virtual quiz held at Christmas. In addition to the regular guidance and advice we are adding to our pages here, our social accounts have lots more to offer.
Please remember to follow us, tweet us, share your stories, pictures and just check in for a little light relief…
You can contact us by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on: 0300 123 1066.