What is ‘Fostering for Adoption’?
This is where the local authority places a child for whom they believe that adoption is the right plan with foster carers who are also approved adopters before the final decision has been made with a view to that child being then subsequently adopted.
If the family court agrees that the child should be adopted and the adoption agency approves the ‘match’ between the carers and the child, the placement then becomes an adoption placement.
The aim is to provide continuity of care for the child and reduce the number of moves they experience before achieving a permanent home. There are many things for prospective adopters who wish to consider this route to adoption and these are further explored in this carer’s leaflet commissioned by UK children’s charity Coram – found via www.corambaaf.org.uk
The terminology ‘Fostering for Adoption’ applies to England only but in Scotland, placements may also start on a fostering basis.
In Northern Ireland most prospective adopters chose to become “dual approved” which means they are approved as both foster carers and as adopters so that a child can be placed with them as early as possible in the legal process, on a fostering basis and then adopted when this is agreed in court.
In Wales, as the current proposal stands, prospective adopters, who are also approved foster carers, will have to be matched with the child before the child can be placed with them as foster carers.
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