A new role in the Adoption service
Nottinghamshire County Council continues to invest in its children's services; to cope with the dramatic rise in numbers of looked after children since the baby P case.
To help those that need adoptive homes be settled permanently as soon as is possible, a new team of social workers was created, to work solely with children who need adoptive homes. In addition, a new post of Homefinder was created.
About the Homefinder
This post was filled by Stuart Holmes and here he tells us about how rewarding his day to day job is as the county's Homefinder.
I like to say I'm "in the happiness business".
At Art College I was learning how to build homes for the future as an architect but now I build homes in a different way. It's my job and my pleasure to make people happy by linking children who need new families with adults who want to be mums and dads by adopting a child who needs them.
My new role is to help improve the service provided to the county's children in care by reducing the time it takes to have children successfully placed with adoptive families.
It's enormously challenging for a host of reasons but it is also enormously rewarding.
In fact, I think the only people that experience a greater level of reward than me are the adopters.
There's really nothing quite like opening your heart and your home to a child whose start in life has been far from ideal.
Giving a child a new life and seeing them flourish and thrive in response to patient, loving care is truly special. The feeling when they give that love back is beyond adequate description. You just know that you've done something incredibly special for a child whose future has been transformed by your care and it feels really, really good. And I have seen many examples of this over the last few months.
Of all the children waiting to be adopted, I have special interest in the forty or so for whom it's been difficult to find a suitable family.
For most it's just the fact that they are in a group of two, three or occasionally more brothers and sisters, often including one or more who are already well into school age. Sometimes there are extra factors to do with health, disability or the lasting effects of the childhood abuse which led to them being in care.
These cases throw up many complexities and must be handled with the best interests of the child at heart.
This month, for example, I am particularly keen to find one person or a couple to adopt sister and brother Chloe age 3 and Jonathan age 2 (names changed to protect confidentiality).
Chloe suffered severe neglect as an infant and needs lots of time and patience to help her feel safe and secure. Currently in foster care, she's recently started to respond more to her carers and turn to them for reassurance and affection. She needs a family where she can continue to make up for lost time.
Her brother Jonathan is having regular checks to make sure his development continues as normal - these will continue with the involvement and support of his adoptive parents.
Interested in adoption?
If you think you could offer Chloe and Jonathan a loving home or any of the other 776 children currently in care in Nottinghamshire then please get in touch.
The more families we have contacting us the quicker we can match them to children who are waiting to be adopted.
Nottinghamshire County Council's adoption service can be contacted on tel: 0845 301 2288 or via the adoption pages on our website.