Northamptonshire County Council has signed up to a new regional adoption partnership in a bid to find more potential adopters for children in care.
The county council will work with five other local authorities – Cambridgeshire, Buckinghamshire, Norfolk, Central Bedfordshire and Bedford Borough – as well as children’s charity Coram and voluntary adoption agencies Adoptionplus and Saint Francis’ Children’s Society to create the new coalition.
It will bring together regional adoption services to increase the potential pool of adopters for the 230 children in the region in need of a new home, while enabling partners to develop wider support services and share skills and resources.
Northamptonshire County Council cabinet member for learning and families Cllr Matthew Golby said: “This is an exciting opportunity for us to collaborate with our new regional partners to access a wider pool of adoptive parents who can offer a home to a child in care.
“In Northamptonshire, like many other local authorities, we have a particular need to find families for older children, sibling groups and children with complex health needs, so this new partnership will hopefully enable us to find homes for these children.”
This is one of several new adoption partnerships across the country being backed by £7 million of government investment.
The aim is to give adoption agencies a greater pool of approved adopters to improve matching, making vital support services more widely available to adoptive families and better targeting the recruitment of adopters.
Partners including Northamptonshire County Council are now working together to create a model for the new organisation, which should be in place by March 2016.
Renuka Jeyarajah-Dent, director of operations for Coram, said: “This coming together of statutory and voluntary agencies is innovative and visionary and is testament to our shared commitment to improving outcomes for vulnerable children.
“We will combine the strengths of all our partners and ensure that we do the best we can collectively for the children waiting for an adoptive family across the entire region.”