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Adoption Research Published

by on 22 January, 2015

The Strategic Research Team (Birmingham City Council) has published its report on customer’s experiences of the Adoption Process in Birmingham City Council.

We spoke to 48 people face to face and a further 81 people took part in our e-survey.  All participants had been engaged in the adoption process in the last three years.

Here are the headline findings:

  • The majority of people felt the preparation training offered to prospective adopters was very valuable and of high quality.
  • In the main timescales were perceived to be too long, as was the length of time waiting between stages.  Delays were particularly frustrating towards the end of the process, once adopters were approved and were waiting to be placed with an adopted child(ren).
  • Adopters gave mixed reports of quality of service. Approximately half praised social workers for their professionalism and support while others felt the service could have been better.
  • Some felt there was a need for more transparency and understanding of the process and decisions, particularly around the assessment and matching process.
  • Some participants felt there should be more flexibility in the Council’s adoption criteria; examples included the layout of houses and the length of adoption leave.
  • Communication was a prominent theme throughout all stages of the adoption process, with adopters asking for more frequent and two way communication to increase their understanding and involvement.
  • Adopters had a strong desire to feedback on their experiences to improve services in the future. Several of them felt there should be more opportunities to provide independent feedback as part of the process.
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