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Adoption Support Plans: exploring the processes

Kempenaar, Maria 2015. Adoption Support Plans: exploring the processes. DSW Thesis, Cardiff University.
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The focus of this thesis is upon the Adoption Support Plan (ASP), one of the documents constructed for new adoptions of children in the UK. The Adoption and Children Act, 2002, made provision for support in adoption through the right to request an assessment of support. The recognition of support for adoption has emerged as the nature of adoption has changed with fewer children being relinquished at birth. Children adopted from social care are generally older and more likely to have experienced trauma and broken attachments. The ‘closed’ nature of the adoption of babies has become more ‘open’ with arrangements such as contact with birth families and access to birth records (Lowe, 1999). It is now understood that adoption is associated with life-long periods of adjustment which can require different levels of support. However little is known about how support is assessed and introduced for new adoptions. A documentary analysis method explored the ways in which the ASP operated within the wider adoption context. Qualitative interviews were also undertaken. The findings highlight that the ASP focused mainly on the matching arrangements concerning the child’s past and present needs, with little consideration of potential future support that might be required. Adopters were largely unaware of the existence and purpose of the ASP to support the adoptive family and their future. Two proposals are made to raise the status and visibility of the ASP during the arrangements for adoption. Firstly, the document should be redesigned and it should be ‘co-produced’ following the placement, allowing the Review to agree the negotiated support requirements. Secondly, a strategic interagency commitment to space for adoption support within mainstream family support services should be established, requiring a programme of information for the public and training for all providers regarding the normative aspects of adoption and the value of support.

Item Type: Thesis (DSW)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2023 16:20

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