The first stages

Once you tell us that you're interested in adopting a child, we'll want to have a chat with you, probably over the phone. There are a few basic details we'll need to find out and we're sure that you'll have a few questions for us.

Initial meeting with Parents for Children

The next step will be for us to send you an information pack for you to go through in detail before arranging to meet face-to-face. This meeting can be at your home or at the Parents for Children's offices – wherever works best for all concerned. At this meeting we'll talk in more depth about your reasons for wanting to adopt and we'll run through our adopter's checklist with you.

Preparation groups

This is a picture of a mother with three boys sitting on a bench. After our first meeting, if you and we are happy to go ahead, you'll be added to a list of prospective adopters waiting for to join a preparation group. We try not to leave you waiting for too long before your first preparation group meets. The group will be made up of other people who want to adopt. The meetings will offer you all an opportunity to learn what's involved in adoption and to begin to prepare yourselves for the task.

During these group meetings you'll have the opportunity to meet some of our current adoptive parents and to hear first hand what the adoption process was like for them. You'll also learn:

  • the basic facts about adoption – the legal and practical issues involved
  • aspects of adoptive parenting that are different from parenting a birth child. We have a series of exercises designed to help you know how it feels to parent someone else's child and to understand how if feels for a child to have a new mother and father
  • how to help children settle and to build attachments
  • how to respond to children who have been abused
  • how to cope with challenging behaviour
  • how to cope with disability
  • aspects of contact with the child's birth family
  • how to deal with attachment disorder
  • all about the health and educational needs of adopted children

What happens next?

After the group meetings you'll be allocated your own Parents for Children social worker, who will meet with you and then begin your assessment.

Photo © www.johnbirdsall.co.uk