Bromley Council has joined forces with a host of other London local authorities to become part of a Regional Adoption Agency run by children’s charity Coram.
The move is designed to bring together expertise to match children waiting to be adopted more quickly with their new adoptive families.
Coram Ambitious for Adoption was launched earlier this year and is London’s first Regional Adoption Agency (RAA). It is now the first port of call for adoption enquiries on behalf of participating local authorities, as well as providing adoption support for all of its adoptive families.
Bromley’s move to a regional agency is as a result of the Government’s introduction of RAAs across England to simplify the adoption process and ensure the voluntary sector and local authorities collaborate as effectively as possible to speed up the matching process. All local authorities across the country are expected to deliver adoption services through an RAA by March 2020.
This comes at a time when prospective adopters are urgently needed to come forward, with numbers falling across London by more than a quarter in the year to December 2018. Over the same period, the gap doubled between the number of approved adopters and children waiting to be adopted.
Councillor Peter Fortune, executive member for children, education and families, said: “This is great news for potential adoptive parents and children awaiting adoption, as well as an exciting development for Bromley adoption services.
“I am sure our partnership with Coram will transform adoption services for children and carers by offering wider choice and, therefore, more opportunities to achieve good matches which will mean that children will be able to settle more quickly into their permanent homes.”
Sue Lowndes, managing director of Coram Ambitious for Adoption, added: “We are delighted to work in partnership with Bromley Council, combining our skills and resources to enable the timely matching of children and adopters, and ensuring access to high quality adoption support.”
Anyone considering adoption across London and surrounding areas is invited to attend one of the free information events to learn more about the process and support and guidance available to becoming a family and beyond. The next available date is November 20 and more information can be found at coramadoption.org.uk/adoption-events