This is episode 19 of the You Can Adopt podcast, hosted by radio DJ Pandora Christie, who speaks to guest Jonny about his experience of adopting through early permanence. Jonny is an Adoption Matters adopter who adopted through the early permanence route of concurrent planning.
Early permanence refers to the situation where children in care are placed in a permanent family home at the earliest opportunity to prevent additional moves between carers. A child would be placed into care with carers who are initially approved as foster carers but who also have the potential to be their adopters. The ‘usual’ adoption route can take 6-12 months or longer, with children moving between one or more placements. With early permanence, children can spend their time waiting with the family planning to adopt them.
Early permanence is totally child centred practice, with the adults managing the uncertainty and not the child. There are two main routes to early permanence; concurrent planning and fostering to adopt. The main difference is the status and preparation of the carers. Concurrent carers will be approved as foster carers and adopters, and are more prepared for the possible return home of the child placed with them. Fostering for adoption carers are primarily adopters that are temporarily approved as foster carers for a specific child.
Given Pandora’s own experience of being fostered, and Johnny’s experience of fostering and then adopting a child, this episode explores both their experiences, with a particular focus on the benefits for the child.