Posted on Wednesday 18th December 2019
The new arrangement will help authorities find permanent placements faster than before for children.
Plans to create a unique partnership improving the lives of children needing adoption or long term foster care are a step closer to completion.
Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet today agreed to join three other local authorities in forming a regional partnership, which will work together to find safe, stable and loving homes for children and provide support to those families.
Shropshire County Council, Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Telford & Wrekin Council are also working towards formal agreement to create the Together4Children adoption agency, which is scheduled to launch in April.
The four authorities will share information on children and the prospective parents available, but each council will retain responsibility for children from its area.
Staffordshire will maintain current levels of investment in the service and the initial partnership will be for two years, with an option for a further three until March 2025.
Mark Sutton, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Children and Young People, said:
This new arrangement will help us match children and the appropriate carers more quickly, providing greater stability, and we know that children who are more settled get a better start in life: their health and wellbeing, academic performance and long term employment prospects are all improved.”
The Together4Children partnership is one of the first of its type in the country and will focus on achieving permanent placements faster than before.
Backed by the Department for Education, which has invested more than £600,000 in developing the project, Together4Children builds on central government’s goal of creating regional adoption services by joining forces to improve services for all children who need long-term and permanent care.
Mark Sutton added:
We want to avoid any delay in finding the right permanent families for the children in our care so by working regionally, we can widen the choice of potential adopters and achieve the best outcomes for children.
Increasing the number and diversity of potential families across the region will help us to keep siblings together, find loving homes for our older children, and for our children who have other specific needs.”