The following animated short film, created by illustrator and adopter Garry Parsons has been released featuring real life stories of everyone involved in the adoption process; an adopted child, a single parent, an adopted person, a birth mother, social workers and family members, who watched loved ones go through the process.
To mark the week, the National Adoption Recruitment Steering Group* has also released two new surveys looking at the nation’s understanding of modern adoption and exploring experiences of those personally or professionally involved.
The research shows the reality of adoption in 2021 – the many benefits, the challenges, and the perception gaps still to be addressed. Nearly half (48%) believe adoption is more socially acceptable than it was 10 years ago, yet still more than a third (35%) admit they find adoption a difficult topic to speak about(1). Despite the need for more to be done for the public to have a better understanding of adoption, one in five (20%) adults say they would consider adopting in the future and nearly nine in 10 (86%) believe that adopting a child would be rewarding(1).
In the past 10 years, 40,920 adoptions have taken place in England, the vast majority of which have been incredibly beneficial and positive to the children and families involved. (2) A survey of those from within the adoption community, that have either adopted or work as an agency or social worker, reveals 94% think adoption today still has challenges to overcome.
According to those from the workforce surveyed, the main challenge is how best to acknowledge a child’s birth family, heritage, and culture, and eight in 10 (82%) also believe the birth mother’s experience can be overlooked by some professionals.
At Adoption Matters we ensure that all of these important aspects of adoption are always considered and part of our work. A child’s birth family, heritage and culture are paramount to us in both finding the right family to meet their needs and ensuring that life work and support needs of a child, now and in the future, are considered. As we operate a service who support birth parents and families, their wishes and feelings are also equally important in our social work practice.
Our main focus at Adoption Matters is adoption and supporting all those affected by adoption. It is all we do and we have done it for over 74 years becoming experts in our field. We have always offered support to birth families and adopted adults involved with our agency and our previous entities that existed up to 100+ years ago for over 50 years – a service we offer free of charge which is funded by our charity. Adoption Matters offers post adoption service to all adopted adults and birth family members who have connections with us (and any historic connection to our agency) to provide information on locating birth relatives, counselling, reunion services and support.
In addition to post adoption services offered, our Centre for Adoption Support has facilitated adopted adults groups and has assisted with a North West group for all adults affected by Adoption Connections.
Jamie Bennett sits on the Adoption Matters Board of Trustees and was also adopted through Adoption Matters, and is therefore extremely passionate about the success of the charity. Jamie comments:
“Many years ago Adoption Matters placed me with the lovely family who made me who I am; and many years later they reconnected me with the family who completed me. I owe this charity the world so it is a pleasure to sit on the Board of Trustees”
Adoption Matters Chief Executive, Norman G. Goodwin, CBE, who is a member of the National Adoption Recruitment Steering Group, said: “Adoption Matters have placed many thousands of children for adoption with our families in our 74+ year history. We know that this has an incredibly rewarding experience for many of these children and families, as Jamie’s comments above clearly show. However, we understand the complexities of adoption and the lives it affects. That’s why in addition to the continued support we offer to our families, children and adopted adults, we have always offered support to birth families involved historically with our agency, a service that is free of charge to those families and funded by our charity. We are proud to be part of this year’s National Adoption Week campaign that aims not only to raise awareness of the continued need for more people to consider adoption for the children waiting, but also a chance for every single person touched by adoption to feel seen, heard, valued and understood.”
We want you to know that you are important to us. You matter.
We offer on-going support to our families for as long as they need it through our Centre for Adoption Support and our Therapy Service lead by a Clinical Psychologist.
Families today come in all shapes and sizes, but we understand that it can sometimes be daunting to attend a new event alone. That’s why we thought it was important to make sure that all of our single parents know that they can bring along a friend to all of our webinars and events for that much needed morale support.
Our webinars can also be accessed by your friends and family for just £15 per person. Helping those close to you understand more about adoption, the reasons children enter care and how to support your children can really help families now and in the future.
Adopter Ruth talks about her journey with Adoption Matters
Children are at the heart of all we do. Their needs are paramount in all of our work.
Our preparation, assessment, training and ongoing support to our families gives children placed with our families a stable and secure future.
We offer a wide variety of groups, webinars and workshops to children, young adopted adults and adopted adults.
Music Matters is a fantastic music group for children and young people aged from 5 to 25 years, delivered by our Centre for Adoption Support in partnership with Plugged in. During Covid-19, we have switched to offering the group online. Membership is free of charge to all Adoption Matters families and families who are commissioned to work with us by their LA/RAA. Take a look at the video below, meet Helen, from our Centre for Adoption Support and our music leaders Amy, Luke and Tricia to find out more!
Adoption Matters, together with a group of other Voluntary Adoption Agencies in England commissioned this animation inspired by adopted children called “what young adopted people want prospective adopters to know”. Groups of young adopted children from across England shared their experiences and thoughts on key topics like school, communication and support.
We are an independent, not for profit, children’s charity.
We continue to push innovative practice and are one of the largest voluntary adoption agencies and children’s charities in the country. Our Centre for Adoption Support and Therapy Service offers a wealth of expertise and multi-disciplinary professionals, including Clinical Psychologists and Occupational Therapists working alongside our Adoption Practitioners.
* The National Adoption Recruitment Steering Group brings together all the major stakeholders in the
delivery of adoption services across England and is made up of representatives from regional and voluntary adoption agencies together with the Consortium of Voluntary Adoption Agencies. Adoption Matters Chief Executive, Norman Goodwin, CBE sits on the Steering Group.
1 Censuswide surveyed 2,001 adults in the UK (24-28 September 2021)
2 Department for Education, 2021 https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-lookedafter-children
Children Waiting Data taken from ASGLB data (April 2020 – March 2021 https://coram-i.org.uk/asglb/data/