Adoption Process

We have a detailed Adoption Process, covered in 2 stages to guide you in your adoption journey.

To make an enquiry either visit our website’s contact us page and click our online form OR email us at: adoptionenquiries@cambridgeshire.gov.uk

We recommend that you do as much preparation as possible before you enquire. Read information from our website; Here, you can also find the Adoption Information Booklet and Real Adoption Stories for more information.

You can also visit other useful adoption information services such as: First4Adoption, AdoptionUK, New Family Social

After enquiring, we will send you a date/s of when you can attend an Adoption Information Evening to find more information about Adoption; Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Adoption and the Adoption Process. The session is hosted by experienced members of our Adoption Team which normally last around 1 – 2 hours – with an opportunity to ask questions depending on how many questions are asked.

The Info Session is open to anyone who is interested in Adoption and lives in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Following attendance at one of our adoption information sessions; you will be required to do an initial interview call with our enquiry team, and an initial interview, we will discuss with you if the time is right for you to start your adoption journey.

We will then ask you to complete a ‘Registration of Interest’ form to provide information for your adoption application. Once submitted you will get a confirmation of whether this has been accepted or declined. Once accepted, Stage 1 of your Adoption Process will begin.

Once the Registration of Interest form has been accepted, we will arrange a social worker who will work and get to know you. They will support you through the process as you learn more about what adopting is all about.

We will begin to take up checks and references such as DBS, the local authority, employers (where appropriate), personal references - we will ask you to supply us with the details of people who can comment on your suitability to adopt, medical checks and we will ask you to complete some self-assessment paperwork.

You will then be invited to our Adoption Preparation Training as part of Stage 1. This will support you in thinking about what is involved in being an adoptive parent and information about the children. 

You will need to complete the course before continuing with your adoption journey and proceed to Stage 2.

After completion of the Adoption Preparation Training and checks and references are collected, we will make a shared decision as to whether to take your application to Stage 2 of the approval process. Your social worker will let you know our decision verbally and in writing.

The Stage 2 process will involve regular meetings with your social worker to talk with you through why you want to adopt, the kind of child you would best be able to care for and your overall strengths and suitability. You will also be invited to attend more detailed training to prepare you for adoption.

Once the assessment is completed, your social worker will write a report for an independent Adoption Panel.

The panel is made up of adoption experts and experienced adopters who will consider all the information gathered during the approval process and make a recommendation on your suitability to be an adoptive parent. You will have the opportunity to comment on the report and to attend the panel if you wish.

Based on the social worker’s assessment and panel’s recommendation and comments, we will decide on whether you are suitable to adopt and move to the next process. If you do not agree with the decision, you have the right to appeal which will be explained to you in the process.

If you are approved, we will start to look for a child/ren that you would best be able to care for. Your involvement in the process of finding the right child/ren is important. Our family finding team will ensure that we find the right family for the right child, and we will work closely with you to guide you through the process.

When there is a potential ‘match’, we will provide full information about the child/ren. We will ensure that you meet the significant people in the child’s life, for example, foster carers, health professionals etc., we will also put together plans for how best to transition the child to your family.

Before the child/ren join their new family. There will be a time for the parent/s and child/ren to get to know each other through a programme of visits. We will support you through the transition to placement period where the child/ren will move in and live together with you, and we will continue to visit and support you until the time feels right to apply to the court for an Adoption Order.

Once the Adoption Order has been granted you will become the child’s / children’s legal parent/s.

Support is offered throughout your adoption journey from the moment you enquire to beyond when the Adoption Order has been granted. We also offer other support such as attachment and therapeutic parenting training and can provide information on activity support groups. Contact Us for more information.