Friday, 29 April 2011

Chat to us on Twitter about adoption


BAAF launched its very first Twitter Chat last night, which focused on adoption. Read on below for a transcript of the chat, which included help and advice from a BAAF expert, plus adoptive and prospective adoptive parents. Most recent tweets appear first.


bizzylizzyme
@spursblogger DS friend-a careleaver, just dropped out of 6th form. School told me he'd failed *them*. I nearly took a pop!#adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
@spursblogger @gayadoptiondad older children adoption? Count me in! #adoptfosterchat


rosiechook
@BAAFAdoption #adoptfosterchat glad it went well even though you had to evacuate at one point! #allinadayswork#happyroyalweddingday


Theresauno
@adoptiondiary Earlier post from BAAF said 'Pop along to our bloghttp://bit.ly/h7qn9v tomorrow for the round-up :) #adoptfosterchat


LoveYouPhoto
@Nico2lette @baafadoption as adoptive parents to two girls - just enjoying life with them is enough. :) #adoptfosterchat


adoptiondiary
Oh gosh... totally missed #adoptfosterchat - *hides like naughty schoolgirl*


ins_foundations
Oh dear, my twitter stopped working half way through the#adoptfosterchat sorry to have missed the last part!


CazbatTweets
@Nico2lette Reading that makes me smile. Thank you.#adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
Great to meet lots of #adoptfosterchat tweeters-looking forward to the next one-thanks @baafadoption : )


AdoptResources
@PottiJo @Memma_Pie @GayAdoptionDad @BAAFAdoption I'm with Jo on that one-depends on child's needs and support available#adoptfosterchat


Mum2Rocky_Mally
@PottiJo Is there any other services you think would be good to tell schools about? #adoptfosterchat


Mum2Rocky_Mally
@PottiJo Who would you recommend schools to ask help for? I work with Targeted Mental Health in Schools so offer support#adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
@memma_pie placement choice is key. For young people and SWs trying to find the right match. Adoption sound alternative#adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
@Memma_Pie @GayAdoptionDad @BAAFAdoption What age do you take to be 'older'? T #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@Memma_Pie @GayAdoptionDad @BAAFAdoption I do think it rather depends on ages and situation :) #adoptfosterchat


Memma_Pie
@GayAdoptionDad @BAAFAdoption #adoptfosterchat I disagree w/ older child adoption. Think it should be special guardianship or kinship


PottiJo
@Mum2Rocky_Mally Indeed and I so think there is help for schools - they just need to ask! #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
Oh if anyone missed my Radio4 Interview on Saturday DM me and I'll send the link. #adoptfosterchat


swampymarsh
1st #adoptfosterchat huge success. IT Manager highlight: Fire alarm forcing the operation into the street! #lifeisneverdull


BAAFAdoption
@spursblogger Next #adoptfosterchat will take place Tuesday, May 31 and will focus on foster care - spread the word!


PottiJo
@BAAFAdoption Whoop whoop ... seemed to work well. Well done.#adoptfosterchat.


spursblogger
@baafadoption thanks to Louise and everyone at BAAF. Only one further question - when's the next one? #adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
@GayAdoptionDad Definitely.... and children with special needs. T*#adoptfosterchat


CazbatTweets
@Scottish_Mum Ours too #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Pop along to our blog http://bit.ly/h7qn9v tomorrow for the round-up :) #adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
@BAAFAdoption Thanx for hosting...look forward to the next one. T#adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
For anyone who missed it/anyone seeking a recap, we'll be posting a blog entry of all tweets tomorrow #adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
@BAAFAdoption you're welcome - enjoyed it #adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
@PottiJo #adoptfosterchat ours offers little more than platitudes.


spursblogger
RT @gayadoptiondad: #adoptfosterchat seemed successful! Need to promote older children adoption! <absolutely. Campaign I think


PottiJo
@Theresauno Yeah SW here workd hard. Life story work, history, etc very fully explored so adopters informed #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
For more info and advice, see here: http://bit.ly/mFGCam and here:http://bit.ly/igzRFy #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Thanks to everyone for participating in the first #adoptfosterchat - an amazing turnout!


PottiJo
@GayAdoptionDad Indeed, older children harder to place and sometimes need additional support #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@Scottish_Mum Indeed. The authority I work in offers tons of support post adoption if people would like it. #adoptfosterchat


GayAdoptionDad
#adoptfosterchat seemed successful! Need to promote older children adoption!


Theresauno
In defense of S/W I have 2 say all my foster children gone on 2 b adopted n S/Ws FULLY informd adopters of past.#adoptfosterchat.


Scottish_Mum
RT @PottiJo: @CazbatTweets yes sadly some people think once child adopted life is rosy. #adoptfosterchat / or no more support needed


PottiJo
I'm not sure I need to say thanks for being adopted.#adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@Nico2lette If you have a positive story to share, why not think about becoming an adoption champion? http://bit.ly/iCzZer#adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@Nico2lette Thanks to whom? #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@AdoptResources @CazbatTweets in fact early expereinces are often minimised or labelled as something else #adoptfosterchat


Nico2lette
@BAAFAdoption #adoptfosterchat how do you say thanx for being adopted....?


PottiJo
@AdoptResources Indeed.... and thats excatly what the Primal Wound is all about. #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
Of course there are schools that offer brilliant support to their families of adopted children #adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
@PottiJo @CazbatTweets one of my bugbears-impact of early experiences doesn't change with legal status #adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
@ins_foundations not negative. Realistic. Combination of realism, optimism and positivity that characterises adopters.#adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@CazbatTweets yes sadly some people think once child adopted life is rosy. #adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
@bizzylizzyme I use the boards, dont know where i'd be without them! #adoptfosterchat


CazbatTweets
#adoptfosterchat If I had known chasm between school support for looked after v adopted children, wld have been tempted to delay legal side.


spursblogger
@bizzylizzyme rotten though, eh? Selfevidently important, shame when children, young people in need are not a priority...#adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
Gosh I am being negative tonight! Something positive - I have 2 AMAZING children and adoption made that possible :-D#adoptfosterchat


MeandMiniMees
"@bizzylizzyme: Anyone else here from AUK boards?#adoptfosterchat" me!


BAAFAdoption
Panic over, I can confirm that we are now BACK INSIDE THE BUILDING #adoptfosterchat #firealarminterlude


MeandMiniMees
#adoptfosterchat great book for ideas - 99 ways to drive your kids sane


ins_foundations
Many teachers do not even know the diff between adoption and fostering, what hope is there for understanding of attachment?#adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
@baafadoption it's the devotion I've come to expect from BAAF, but never take for granted #adoptfosterchat


CazbatTweets
#adoptfosterchat We've been really lucky with schools. Post adoption support has been virtually non existent so v grateful.


PottiJo
@BAAFAdoption Books are ok but interactive workshops would be useful maybe on inset days #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
Anyone else here from AUK boards? #adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
@BAAFAdoption I shouldnt laugh, but I can just picture you!#adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
@pottijo I'm seeing it already. Cuts biting. SWs keen to do their best, reality being stretched beyond breaking point#adoptfosterchat


MeandMiniMees
@adopdad Louise bomber is good at school info too#adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
Teachers don't know about normal child dev, so what hope for attachment etc? Academies miss out on LEA INSET too#adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Apologies for delay in replying - our fire alarm just went off so we're tweeting from the street! #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Please see list of all our education-related publications:http://tinyurl.com/6awkn87 #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
@spursblogger exactly! not a priority :-) #adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
I really like the attachment in classroom book, also inside i'm hurting#adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
@spursblogger ....foster self identity. That said each case needs to be considered separately as all individuals. T #adoptfosterchat


adopdad
#adoptfosterchat are there any fora for teachers where #adoptionissues are discussed #teachers cc @BAAFAdoption


Theresauno
@spursblogger agree, Kids need families bt best p/ment wud be wiv family of same ethnic b/ground to help ........ #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
Trouble is school thinks they're experts, DS ok academically & we're over-fussy as we're not quite real parents #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@spursblogger And also with impending cuts to front line services too #adoptfosterchat


MeandMiniMees
#adoptfosterchat brilliant book. Bit heavy going at times, but very helpful


spursblogger
@pottijo yep, SWs massively overstretched precisely at time when their work, duties ever more complex, subtle #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@bizzylizzyme Another text you may find useful on helping looked after children to learn http://bit.ly/lN9LhE #adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
#adoptfosterchat the school issue is bigger than just foster / adopt, special needs. High crossover.


MeandMiniMees
"@BAAFAdoption: BAAF offers training for teachers: bit.ly/lscgjG#adoptfosterchat" wish the Minis teachers would!


BAAFAdoption
Please see helpful book in relation to education and emotional wellbeing: http://bit.ly/iPFk1E #adoptfosterchat


jj2008ed
#adoptfosterchat we both white and have a dual heritage son and about to adopt similar girl. Real challenges ahead but joyously happy


spursblogger
..whole issue needs better ways of evaluating what identity means for each and every individual child #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
@ins_foundations @BAAFAdoption Exactly! We found school really resistant to understanding. 6th form is a bit better ...#adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@BAAFAdoption Actualy in reality the person in the school with responsibility has 20 other things as well! #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
BAAF offers training for teachers: http://bit.ly/lscgjG#adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
Should increase options for children and enhances prof judgement but concerned identity issues pushed further down agenda#adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
@BAAFAdoption Primary was fine but 2ndary has been a battle & SENCO "blind" to adoption. In yr 12 now so game over :-)#adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
@BAAFAdoption @bizzylizzyme Unfortunately not a reality as so many adopted/Looked after children are misunderstood.#adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
@ins_foundations good question, not easy answer never mind 140 characters, but...#adoptfosterchat


MeandMiniMees
#adoptfosterchat I can't believe how much has happened since the Minis moved. One huge rollercoaster!


ins_foundations
@bizzylizzyme check out my website when you have time, its something we are working on #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
@BAAFAdoption Better turnout than I thought! :-) #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@bizzylizzyme Each school should have a designated teacher with awreness and understanding of looked after children#adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
placing chidren with families regardless ethnicity?#adoptfosterchat” /friend did, fab family, little boy who would not be placed otherwise.


AdoptResources
@JennyFlintoft thanks mrs ; ) #adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
@jj2008ed fab! 4yo will probably start playing up to keep you on your toes ; ) #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Brilliant turnout for first #adoptfosterchat!


bizzylizzyme
Schools are not at all clued up about adoption. Something BAAF could look into? #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@Theresauno Absolutely agree. The match is so so important.#adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
“@CazbatTweets fancy meeting you here lol #adoptfosterchat”


Theresauno
I guess one of the other major considerations for S/W is makin a good match n ensurin adopters r fully informed about child#adoptfosterchat


ianrobsons
Love seeing our children grow in confidence and laugh again#adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
“@jj2008ed (open adoption) #adoptfosterchat” / I'd say depends on birth family and if it is causing stress to the children.


spursblogger
.I really feel for adopters in that situation My view? courts more child centred, SWs more proactive keep timescale hustle!#adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
Personally I do not think it will change. A friend recently enquired about a child of diff ethnicity & was told absolute NO#adoptfosterchat


justmesathere
#adoptfosterchat adoption is the gold at the end of a rainbow,the sparkle in fairy dust + love in your mothers eyes.Love in it's true form!


BAAFAdoption
@AdoptionAli If you need further help & advice, please see here:http://bit.ly/mFGCam #adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
“@CazbatTweets: @adopdad Most positive thing is they have gifts you can only dream of. My kids are sporty #adoptfosterchat” / mine too


ins_foundations
What are peoples views on the new guidance of placing chidren with families regardless of ethnicity? #adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
...court requires SWs to find adopters early, good planning in theory, in practice adopters sometimes hang on for months.#adoptfosterchat


jj2008ed
@AdoptResources @ yes. Taking 13 months off work and wife work part time so lots of chance for 1 on 1. #adoptfosterchat


ianrobsons
Key to progress with adoption post placement for us was teamwork and keeping perspective #adoptfosterchat


wifeofacurate
#adoptfosterchat best thing about adoption: being privileged to be a parent of a lovely darling boy


spursblogger
@pottijo @Memma_Pie agree, especially if parents contest or as often happens where SWs have to explore other family#adoptfosterchat


Scottish_Mum
“@AdoptResources: @adopdad best thing-watching them grow + develop into amazing people #adoptfosterchat” / agree


AdoptResources
Feeling a bit hyper trying to keep up with #adoptfosterchat ; )


BAAFAdoption
@Memma_Pie @PottiJo The aim to place babies within 6 mths and then with a carefully thought-through plan of introductions#adoptfosterchat


confessionsmum
@adopdad #adoptfosterchat being an adopte the worse thing is when people assume I'm from another planet just because I was adopted


AdoptResources
@swampymarsh I agree one of the hardest parts of the process#adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
@jj2008ed Dn't think it is something you can push, more about facilitating through play, positive praise, encouragement etc#adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
@adopdad best thing-watching them grow + develop into amazing people #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@jj2008ed Think thru a range of strategies to support 4 yr old- including materials available.Such as: http://bit.ly/jYSbwA#adoptfosterchat


swampymarsh
@ins_foundations assessment takes time. Waiting for placement the hardest part my friends found 18 mnths and still waiting#adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
@jj2008ed do you have any time you can have 1to1 with 2yo? Lots of play, tactile things, easy stuff with easy rules #adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
@bizzylizzyme Completely agree #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@BAAFAdoption @Memma_Pie The court process is often where the delays are #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
Best thing about adoption? My lovely son, of course! Adoption is the very best & hardest thing I have ever done! #adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
Agree that the length of the process is appaling! 1st time took me 20 months, 2nd time I am 2 years in and still not close#adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Welcome, all newcomers! #adoptfosterchat


PottiJo
@BAAFAdoption I've found that my adoption experiences have been useful on the adoption panel I sit on. #adoptfosterchat


jj2008ed
#adoptfosterchat any advice on settling in / promoting attachment with 2yr old with current 4 yr old who we adopted as a baby


CazbatTweets
@adopdad Most positive thing is they have gifts you can only dream of. My kids are sporty #adoptfosterchat


adopdad
Ok what's the best /positive thing about adoption? ( it's a bit like that q why do you want to adopt) #adoptfosterchat


CazbatTweets
Hello. Two adopted sibs here. 5 1/2 yrs & 16 months adopted 10 yrs ago #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@adopdad Go ahead! #adoptfosterchat


adopdad
@BAAFAdoption Have you any questions or would you like us to start #adoptfosterchat


Theresauno
#adoptfosterchat Hi all, am glad to be here too. T


BAAFAdoption
@QuiverFullMummy You don't need a quesion, just tell us about your experiences :) #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
@Memma_Pie Do you mean length of time to place a child? Or length of time for assessment to adopt? #adoptfosterchat


bizzylizzyme
Hello! #adoptfosterchat


AdoptResources
Sitting in the garden and following #adoptfosterchat


spursblogger
Good evening everybody. Thanks to BAAF people for hosting. I'm mainly fostering these days but happy to help where I can#adoptfosterchat


ins_foundations
@BAAFAdoption Hi, very pleased to be part of #adoptfosterchat


BAAFAdoption
Don't forget to tag your tweets with #adoptfosterchat if you have any questions for our expert. But be nice - she's feeling nervous!


BAAFAdoption
Hi all. Welcome to first every #adoptfosterchat hosted by @BAAFAdoption!


Thank you to everyone who took part - it was a real success! The next #adoptfosterchat will take place Tuesday, May 31 between 7pm and 8pm and will focus on foster care.


For more information and advice, please see the helpline section of our website. You may also find the following websites of use:

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Running the London Marathon to raise funds for adoption and fostering

Alexandra talks about how she ran the London Marathon to raise funds for adoption and fostering. 

The first impression was of slight anti-climax. I’d been building towards this moment for the last nine weeks and when the gun went off, nothing happened. Twenty-five minutes later I reached the start line and the crowd broke into a run. The first few miles had a religious flavour, a Catholic priest standing on the kerbside murmuring blessings and scattering droplets of holy water, a mile or so further on a more evangelical, louder group hurling ladlefuls of holy water across the runners, who at that point included a couple as Adam and Eve.
  
Everybody said ‘the crowd’ll get you round’, and I hadn’t really understood just what that meant, but they did. I had also been told how important it was to put my name on my shirt, so I did. It meant that every couple of minutes somebody called out ‘Come on Alexandra’, and I had to look to see who it was and smile at them, so I ended up smiling most of the way round. My husband spent the day dashing around London in order to pop up at as many places as possible, giving me a great boost every time I spotted him.

As well as the spectators, the other runners provided a distraction from the actual business of running. Is it just London? I can’t imagine there are many other countries where you would see two men dressed as a double-decker bus overtaking a girl dressed as a testicle.

Just before half-way I ran past the group of BAAF supporters, giving another boost to the spirits. It didn’t click until I was about a mile past them that the almost-teenager standing with her mother in that group was a child in whose case I’d been involved several years ago. There was a story standing there, two people whose lives are happier because of adoption, and there are hundreds of others out there who I don’t know and will never meet, but who have been touched, directly or indirectly, by the work BAAF does. That realisation had me welling up again (hold on, it’s a hot day, can’t afford to dehydrate!) and pushed me on into Docklands.

The route went into a tunnel at Blackfriars, where spectators weren’t allowed, and the withdrawal of support, plus the uphill slope out of the tunnel, had an impact. I slowed to a walk out of the tunnel, but then spotted my husband again, watching out for me on the Embankment. I didn’t want him to see me walking and persuaded my legs to start running again.

Round the front of Buckingham Palace and I could see the finish line, I was actually going to have run a marathon. Never thought I would, didn’t think I could, but I did, I really did. I have an odd expression in the finisher’s photo, my face hasn’t made up its mind whether to laugh or burst into tears. It was a hugely emotional day, and despite what the photos might suggest, I loved every minute. I’ll be applying for another go next year as soon as the ballot opens.

I haven’t met my fundraising target yet, and it’s not too late to help me out - my page at www.virginmoneygiving.com/AlexandraConroyHarris is still open. Please consider visiting it.

If you are interested in taking part in one of BAAF's fundraising activities, please visit the website.




Tuesday, 12 April 2011

A film about adoption: A Home For Maisie

BAAF, together with several other organisations including Adoption UK and PACT, have sent out a press statement regarding the issues raised in the BBC documentary ‘A Home For Maisie’ that was aired last night. To read the statement please go to: www.baaf.org.uk/node/3356
(C) BBC/Les Wilson

If you missed the documentary and would like to see it, it can be found on BBC iPlayer: http://bbc.in/gxflYK

If you'd like to hear other people's views on the documentary, read on below for a roundup of the Twitter chat. Don't forget to add your own comments!

@meggojerry
Met this couple a few years back - they are amazing. #ahomeformaisie

@drivingequality
RT @waveyjane: Just finished watching #AHomeforMaisie on #BBC, and just finished crying...

@drivingequality
RT @RuthStivey: one day I hope to have a house full of kids like that #AHomeforMaisie ....me too!!

@drivingequality
@PACTCHARITY Thanks for the RT #ahomeformaisie

@findaloo
Of course I cried. Of course. #ahomeformaisie

@UNICORN_Kirsty
#ahomeformaisie Humbled and inspired by the amazing people on this show

@vburbridge
Just watched a brilliant programme #ahomeformaisie - the world's a much better place for lovely people like them

@Psyclyst A
It rounded up a day of thinking about people who find it hard to hope #ahomeformaisie #attachment

@Henriettabond
If u were amazed by adopters in #HomeforMaisie then maybe try 'If you don't stick with me who will?' which I compiled for @BAAFAdoption

@aligilleard
#homeformaisie http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/apr/09/sue-and-jim-clifford-home-for-maisie

@Psyclyst
@AlexiMostrous Remarkable weren't they. #homeformaisie

@aligilleard
just watched #homeformaisie about little Maisie who wanted to be adopted. Very moving

@Bexxxxyy
just watched that programme with the little girl #maisie, sooo touching, big shouts to mumma and papabear, blessed to have good parents xxxx

@chd73
#Maisie - wow what a program. I take all of my hats off to Jim & Sue.

@CYFitness
Just watched A Home For #Maisie. Totally inspiring family. Sue and Jim are pretty amazing people.

@Brammers_Ay
Food for thought or what - wishing her a long and happy life #maisie

@cpsross
Well done #Maisie and #familyfutures. You're brilliant.

@PACTCHARITY
If you were moved by #ahomeformaisie please visit www.pactcharity.org to find out how you can support our work, adopt or foster

@RuthStivey
one day I hope to have a house full of kids like that #AHomeforMaisie

@RuthStivey
#AHomeforMaisie what about the ones who aren't adopted? @WhoCaresTrust reaches kids in care directly, giving (cont) http://tl.gd/9pq16f

@SewRecycled
Powerful documentary #ahomeformaisie . The past 3 years I've seen how positive adoption can be on a childs life with therapy, take note Gov!

@runwaychris
RT @Lizziemouse: Jim and Sue - you are hugely inspiring - you have a beautiful family, thank you for sharing Maisie's story #ahomeformaisie

@Jenny49913032
Just watched #ahomeformaisie on BBC 2. Was trying so hard not to cry. If they hadn't adopted her, I definately would have done.

@alisonbeech
Absolutely outstanding documentary #ahomeformaisie £300k pa for secure care or <£50k pa for therapy? No brainer? Jim & Sue I salute you.

@ColletteWalsh
#AHomeForMaisie..wonderful *blub* #heartwarming. #bbc2

@DamonBeMine
Just watched #ahomeformaisie and was blown away. So touching. <3

@waveyjane
Just finished watching #AHomeforMaisie on #BBC, and just finished crying...So much respect for adopters

@PACTCHARITY
PACT is looking for people who become a forever family for children like Maisie #ahomeformaisie See www.pactcharity.org

@RuthStivey
if you liked #AHomeforMaisie check out the work @WhoCaresTrust does for kids in care...

@CaptainFlashman
Watching BBC 2 #Maisie ... in absolute awe at parents that adopt and go through hell and back to support kids who need a break.

@JoSawford
Watching 'A home for #Maisie' bbc.co.uk/news/education… hard viewing

@Scottie_Brown
Don't normally watch programmes like #homeformaisie but it was really interesting. How many people would just walk away from that situation?

@Cate365
What an amazing couple #homeformaisie I feel very humbled

@IndigoSteph
incredible parents #homeformaisie

@IndigoSteph
very tough telly #homeformaisie

@MartinatKelly
Don't watch #maisie on #bbc2 just now unless you have a big box of kleenez

@bramblejam
watching a home for #maisie on BBC2

@Caznay
Can't bear the show about #Maisie. Reading a book instead.

If you are considering adoption, please visit www.bemyparent.org.uk for further information and advice.

What did you think of the documentary? Add your comments below!




Monday, 11 April 2011

The day I adopted my son

Adoptive mum Junice looks back 14 years and tells us about the day she welcomed Jacob into her family.

Jacob was only eight months old when I adopted him. I remember going to the foster carer’s house for my first introduction meeting. Jacob was so small. He sat happily on my lap and played with my car keys and an empty pack of tic-tacs - it’s funny the things that you remember.

That Friday afternoon when I first met my son and when he first smiled at me, I was amazed because he had dimples like me and the rest of my family. Having him sat on my lap felt so right. He didn’t fuss or cry - just sat happily, with my keys, his little afro and smiled. I became a parent on that day.

Bringing Jacob home was a bit of a shock. Most new mothers have nine months to prepare for parenthood – I had a few days. After spending four days visiting Jacob, I spent that last Thursday evening as a single person preparing his nursery and for motherhood.
I brought Jacob home on a Friday; a day we still celebrate 14 years later - our “Home Coming Day”.

In the first month I didn’t get dressed before midday. I didn’t know that one small person could have so much stuff and I had to buy more stuff that I had forgotten like a highchair and baby bath. Years later I look back and wished I had tried more - used real nappies and had taken more photos. I am so thankful for a baby that slept through the night; a happy child, and family and friends that embraced him without question or doubt.

Now he is almost 14 years old, he does not need me in the same way, but I still treat him as my baby ....... most of the time!  I still make his packed lunch for school, make his bed and run his bath. I could go on - I take my duties as a parent very seriously! I have ensured that Jacob is cherished and feels extraordinary - because he is. He has made our family what it is today – an amazing unit that fits perfectly into our extended family.

For more personal accounts of adoption, check out the 'Our Story' collection in BAAF's bookshop.







Thursday, 7 April 2011

A week in the life of… Be My Parent’s adoption placement team

Today, Patricia McGinty talks to us about her role as Child Placement Consultant for BAAF’s Be My Parent newspaper and website. She is part of the team that finds adoption and long term fostering families for children in care.

There is no typical week within Be My Parent, but we do work on a monthly cycle around the production of the newspaper. For two weeks of every month I work on approving the children’s profiles, the written descriptions that you can see online and in the newspapers. Many of these children will have sadly had some difficult early experiences which may include abuse or neglect or just circumstances where a parent is unable to care for their child. I work closely with our editorial team and the children’s social workers to make sure profiles are reflective of good social work practice and maximise the child’s chances of finding an adoptive or permanent foster family.

When profiles come to Be My Parent, we make sure they are easy to read with sufficient detail to help prospective families to make appropriate enquiries. We encourage agencies to use our online service, where there is space for longer profiles and the opportunity to include additional photos and film clips to help present a more rounded image of the child’s personality and needs. The film clips really help to bring the children’s profiles to life, offering a clearer image of what the child is like—something especially valuable for children with complex needs, such as a disability.

During National Adoption Week I work with local authorities and our press office to profile children needing adoption in the mainstream media. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to explore a new pool of prospective families for children who have been waiting a long time for an adoptive family. In the past this has included The Sun newspaper, and TV programmes such as This Morning and GMTV. Because working with the mainstream media involves more public exposure, a lot of work is involved to ensure that the children and their birth relatives are appropriately prepared. In National Adoption Week 2010 we featured 14 children, all of which received enquiries, and potential families are being considered for four of them.

I also provide information and advice to families interested in adoption and fostering. Sometimes families come to me distressed because they‘ve waited a long time for a potential match with a child that may have fallen through. A couple of weeks ago I received a telephone call from an adoptive family who told me I had encouraged them not to give up at an Adoption Exchange Day two years ago, where they were frustrated after two years of waiting. They phoned to share their wonderful news that they’d been matched with a child. Knowing they’d persevered to make a positive difference to a child’s life following my advice made my week!

I’m very proud of the service we provide. 2500 prospective adoptive and permanent foster families currently subscribe to Be My Parent. Last year, 120 children were placed with permanent families though the Be My Parent service, and of the 800 children referred to us, 97% received enquiries from prospective adoptive and permanent foster families. When one of us receives news that a child has been placed with a family the whole team celebrates. That’s the main reward – knowing that all the hard work and commitment and that goes into getting the child’s profile right or supporting a family can result in making a positive and lifelong difference to so many lives.

Patricia is currently involved with our See the Difference page, where the public can help fund Be My Parent's phone service for prospective parents. Be sure to visit to see our See the Difference video today.







Monday, 4 April 2011

Competition: ‘Like’ BAAF, win a bundle of books!

In case you weren’t already familiar with it, we have our very own Facebook page where you can keep up to date with our latest news and events, chat with other adoption enthusiasts, and laugh at our quiz night photos (well, they do take place in the pub!). 

To celebrate the success of the page we’re running a competition to give away a bundle of books, which should keep you entertained until the weather’s a bit warmer. Titles in the giveaway include:



Photo by somegeekintn


  • ‘Brother & Sister’ by Joanna Trollope
  • ‘Other Women’ by Kirsty Crawford
  • ‘Raven’s Gate’ by Anthony Horowitz
  • ‘Strays’ by Ron Koertge


All you have to do to be in with a chance of landing in literary heaven is head to our Facebook page and ‘like’ us. You will be entered into a prize draw and a winner will be chosen at random on Tuesday, April 12. Simple!
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