Following your approval to adopt we will begin to identify children that appear to fit your profile and discuss a possible placement with you and your family. We start by looking at children in Doncaster who are waiting for adoption, and then at children nationally. To do this, we use a range of methods including Adoption Match and Link Maker and through regional and national events.
Further information about the family finding process is available using the drop down boxes below.
- Step 1: Linking
We will look to identify a link between you and a child who will potentially fit your profile; as part of this, foster carers and professionals in the child’s life will share information with you in the form of reports and face to face meetings.
- Step 2: Life appreciation day
In Doncaster we hold an event known as a ‘Life Appreciation Day’ before any placement is made. At this event you (as the prospective adopter) will be provided with detailed information about the child who we have linked to you. This information is provided by relevant professionals and those who have been a part of the child’s life; it includes information on the child’s background, character and medical history. Our team are committed to ensuring you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about proceeding with a link at this stage.
- Step 3: Matching you to your child
Following from the Life Appreciation Day, and you making the decision to proceed with your link, you and the child will be identified as a suitable match. At this point a comprehensive report, including details of the support offered to you, the child and your wider family, will be presented to our Adoption Panel – which you will be invited to attend. The panel will consider this match and make their recommendation on this to our Agency Decision Maker (ADM) who uses this recommendation to agree the match.
- Step 4: Introductions
We will draw up a plan to introduce you to the child you have been matched to adopt, this will usually happen over a few weeks so you and the child are able to get to know one another, and give you the chance to get to know their routines, likes and dislikes. At the end of these planned introductions the child will come to live with you. Throughout this period you will be in regular contact with your social worker who will offer you comprehensive support.
- Step 5: Placement
When the child comes to live with you, it is formally known as ‘placement’. At this stage of the adoption process you will share parental responsibility for the child with Doncaster Children’s Services Trust (or the Local Authority which the child comes from) and the child’s birth parents. We (or the Local Authority which the child comes from) will decide the extent of each party’s parental responsibility.
- Step 6: Reviews
During the placement period we will review how you are getting on and identify any support needs you, or the child, may have. After your second review, or after ten weeks of the child living with you, your Reviewing Officer can recommend submitting an application to court for an Adoption Order.
- Step 7: Adoption order
Once the child has lived with you for at least ten weeks you will be able to apply to court for an Adoption Order. When this is granted by a court, you will have legally adopted the child. The court will issue you with a copy of the Adoption Order and you will receive a new birth certificate for the child, naming you as their parent.