The Assessment Process (Part 4)
The entire contents of our assessment / home study pages is available as a download on this page.
Could you adopt Malachi?
We are looking for a new family for Malachi. Could you be his new family? Why not find out more?
Part 4 summarises evidence of various abilities necessary when looking after an adopted child. This evidence should be collected primarily by you, with guidance from your agency social worker, and should be stored in a portfolio. It is intended that the summary of this evidence as recorded here and the summary and NOT the portfolio will be presented to the Adoption Panel.
Your agency social worker will note the type of evidence, its relevance and its adequacy, for each of the areas under consideration. This will give an indication of your 'competence' in each of these areas. The purpose of this is for you to gain a clear understanding of the skills, knowledge and experience required by adoptive parents. Where there are identified shortcomings an action plan will be drawn up, detailing how these shortcomings can be remedied.
Your agency social worker will be asked to detail 'competences' with regard to the following abilities:
1) Caring for children.
You need to be able to provide a good standard of care throughout childhood and into adulthood. You will need an understanding of child development, the ability to communicate with children appropriate to that development, and the ability to set appropriate boundaries and manage your child(ren) within those boundaries.
2) Providing a safe and caring environment.
You must be able to care for children in an environment where the children are safe from harm or abuse, be capable of educating children to protect themselves from and to seek help if threatened by such abuse, and be able to recognise the vulnerability of disabled children to abuse and to discrimination.
3) Working as part of a team.
You need to be able to work with other individuals and organisations, be able to communicate effectively, keep information confidential and be able to act as an advocate for the child. You must also have an understanding of racism and discrimination, and be able to promote an anti-discriminatory and anti-racist approach to parenting.
4) An understanding of adoption as a life-long process.
You must to be able to understand a child's needs in relation to his or her background, and be able to assist in meeting those needs. You must be able to promote the development of the child to adulthood, and be able to show an understanding of adoption as a life-long process. You must be able to seek appropriate post-adoption support where necessary.
5) Own development.
You must have an awareness of how personal experiences have affected your own development, and of how adoption will be likely to affect you and your family. You should be able to create a support network within your community to help you in your adoption task, be able to take up training opportunities, and cope under stress.