Dudley Council has joined up with two other local authorities and one children’s trust to form a new Regional Adoption Agency for the Black Country.
The City of Wolverhampton, Walsall and Dudley councils and Sandwell Children’s Trust have this week formally launched the Regional Adoption Agency, Adoption@Heart.
The partners have already operated a shared recruitment service under the name of Adoption@Heart, and have over 14 years’ experience of collaborative working previously in the guise of Adoption in the Black Country. The regional adoption agency will take the best from that experience and take it further, improving the service while securing better value for money.
The new service will operate throughout the Black Country and is being hosted by the City of Wolverhampton Council at its offices at Priory Green in Pendeford.
The development of Regional Adoption Agencies is designed to help speed up matching and markedly improve the life chances of neglected and damaged children, improve adopter recruitment and adoption support, and reduce costs.
Martin Samuels, Strategic Director for People at Dudley Council said:
We are delighted to be part of the new regional adoption agency for the local area, Adoption@Heart.
We’ve been working with our regional colleagues for 14 years now and have a strong basis from which to carry this work forward.
By working collaboratively and sharing our skills, experience and resources we hope that local children will benefit and be matched with a family sooner.
Anyone can adopt, whether they are single, married, a same sex couple, in employment or not working, or already have children or not. Potential adopters must legally be a UK resident, and have been so for at least 12 months, and be aged 21 or over. They should be able to provide a stable home for a child until adulthood and beyond.
For more information about Adoption@Heart, and to find out more about adopting a child, please visit www.adoptionatheart.org.uk. Alternatively attend one of the Adoption@Heart information events, taking place at Merry Hill Shopping Centre on Wednesday 10 April at 6pm or Priory Green in Pendeford on Wednesday 17 April at 6pm.