Types of adoption

There are several different types of adoption which you may want to consider as you think about growing your family.

Fostering for Adoption

Combining fostering and adoption is widely known as ‘early permanence’, but we prefer the simpler ‘Fostering for Adoption’.

With this approach, you’ll start by fostering a child to begin with, but you’ll be ready and approved to fully adopt them if a court eventually decides they can’t continue to live with their birth family.

You’ll get training on Fostering for Adoption to see if the plan is right for you during your main assessment to become an adoptive family. If it is, and you complete your assessment, you’ll foster a child at the earliest opportunity of their care proceedings.

Fostering for Adoption keeps the option open of the child re-joining their family or staying with you as their adoptive family. It means the child won’t have to be repeatedly relocated to temporary foster carers while we wait for their family to be assessed, so they experience the least amount of disruption as possible during their early years.

Keep in mind there’s no guarantee you will fully adopt the child as Fostering for Adoption carers; in some cases they may return to their birth parents.

Little boy with parent Little boy reading with adopter

Step-parent adoption

If you’re a step-parent to an adopted child, you can apply to become their adoptive parent in exceptional circumstances.

You’ll need to contact your local authority first about step-parent adoption; get in touch with your council if you live in Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth or Southampton.

Inter-country adoption

If you are thinking about adopting a child from a country outside of the UK you still need to be assessed and approved by a recognised adoption agency in this country.

Your assessment is done by a voluntary adoption agency called the Inter Country Adoption Centre if you live in Hampshire.

If you live in Isle of Wight, Southampton or Portsmouth you will need to contact your local authority.

Parent playing with child
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