Adoption UK is delighted £144m of vital adoption support funding has been secured to help vulnerable children across England over the next three years. This represents an increase on the current allocation of £46m for this year.
The Adoption Support Fund (ASF) pays for therapeutic support for families whose children left care through adoption or special guardianship arrangements. These children are likely to have experienced severe trauma prior to coming into care and many need support to help them thrive. Since its introduction in 2015, the Government has invested more than £144m in the ASF. Almost 40,000 adoptive families have benefitted from the fund to date.
Responding to the Government announcement, Adoption UK’s Director of public affairs and communications Alison Woodhead said: ‘This increased investment in the ASF is nothing short of a lifeline to families bringing up some of the most vulnerable children in England. A third of adopters told us the support they accessed via the ASF has helped them to avoid a potential breakdown of their adoption.’
The announcement comes after the Government acknowledged in its adoption strategy, published last year, the need to listen to the voices of adopted people and adopters, and committed to give families the support they need, when they need it. The strategy draws on evidence from Adoption UK’s Adoption Barometer. The Barometer, based on a large annual survey of adopters and adopted people, is listed as one of the Government’s tests for success.
The Government has also announced £19.5 million to strengthen the work of Regional Adoption Agencies, to improve matching between parents and children, and to increase the recruitment of prospective adopters from diverse communities.