Post adoption support
You Deserve the Best Adoption Journey
We believe that every child and every adoptive family has a right to an integrated, post-placement programme that ensures a firm foundation for the future. Once your placement has begun, you and your child will have Family Futures’ sophisticated treatment programme of post adoption support, which includes a wide range of therapeutic services for hurt children. Our multi-disciplinary programme is unique and has evolved over the past 20 years based on our experiences of supporting families who have adopted. This service is available to all of those who adopt through us and is now being largely funded by the Adoption Support Grant which was launched in May 2015. Our research has shown that with support from Family Futures achieves significant and positive gains for the child in all areas of their development.
- You will have access to a comprehensive treatment programme including:
Systemic family and network support. Research has shown that support is a key factor in the success of permanent placements.
- Trauma focused therapy with the child and the parents working in collaboration with the therapy team. Your new child is likely to have spent some time in a traumatising environment. It is crucial that these experiences are addressed with your child and you together.
- An attachment based therapy programme, designed to enhance attachment forming behaviours in the child, and bonding by the parent.
- Facilitated contact with the birth parents: this will be reviewed in the light of your child’s changing needs.
- Your child will have access to a programme of sensory integration therapy planned by our Occupational Therapist and a nutrition assessment and treatment programme, if required.
- Our Paediatrician, Psychiatrist and Educational Psychologist will be involved in assessments, and may recommend further treatment programmes, if required.
Throughout this programme, you will have access to 24 hour support and will be coached in developmental re-parenting by a trained Parent Mentor. This is how we describe the kind of parenting we have found abused or neglected children need. Some of it will be familiar to you and we’ll help you develop new skills.
School can be hard for hurt children – many struggle and some have even been excluded. For children of school age who are newly placed, time out of school, which is a stressful environment for them, might be needed to give you the chance to bond with your new child. For children who are not in school for whatever reason, home tuition may be a temporary phase prior to re-integration into mainstream schooling. However, for this to be effective, intensive support from the therapy team, our Specialist Teacher, and our Educational Psychologist and Paediatric Occupational Therapist is an integral part of our i-Learn programme.
The i-Learn programme offers parents and their child an opportunity to spend time at Family Futures, focusing on the particular learning needs of their child and developing an individual learning plan for them. This could involve weekly, biweekly or monthly visits to Family Futures. Following an assessment of the child’s IQ, Executive Functioning* and observation by our Specialist Teacher, a programme of learning strategies and a developmentally appropriate curriculum will be devised. You will be supported and given expert advice and help on how to pursue the programme at home. When appropriate, the therapy team, Specialist Teacher and Occupational Therapist will work closely with you and your child’s school, to plan a re-entry programme and put in place the support that your child may need in the classroom.
* The child’s ability to solve problems in new or unfamiliar situations
Trauma changes everything in infancy. Our “Parenting from Back to Front “programme is designed specifically for helping parents, parent traumatised children with attachment difficulties. It is based on the premise that initially children respond to most interpersonal situations with the fight flight or freeze, primitive brain reaction to situations. Parents need help in learning how to calm and regulate their child before they can move on to developing secure attachments and a range of emotions which is largely a midbrain function. Our back to front programme is based on theory and research from neuroscience. It builds upon the innovative and very successful Adoption UK parenting programme that we co-produced. It draws heavily on the parenting programmes devised by Bryan Post and Dan Hughes model of parenting traumatised children and his more recent brain-based parenting. In addition to these, it integrates strategies for school as well as home.
Like all our work at Family Futures, we are aware that no “one thing” works in isolation when it comes to post adoption support. It also recognises that parenting is an interaction between child and parent and parents need to be “mind minded” and “ regulated” themselves as often as possible when dealing with challenging behaviours.
Before birth, in the first weeks of life and into toddlerhood, the lack of touch, free movement and interpersonal interaction impairs the baby’s development of their senses. These senses begin developing in the womb and continue to develop throughout life. However, the type of neglect, emotional and physical abuse experienced by most children who are adopted today inevitably impairs their sensory motor development. For this reason, Family Futures is privileged to have a Paediatric Occupational Therapist, who specialises in sensory integration, working alongside parents, therapists, nutritionists and educationalists. Her role is to assess areas of impaired development and devise remedial programmes.
Paediatric occupational therapists are interested in how a child functions in all aspects of daily life, including at home, school and play/leisure. Our therapists also work with teachers and learning support assistants in schools to give advice in a consultancy role. We help children in all kinds of ways, including:
• Handwriting – poor legibility or speed
• Difficulty with getting dressed, managing buttons or zips
• Difficulty with tolerating touching sensations
• Difficulty with using a knife and fork
• Poor self care skills
All of our programmes are underpinned by the principle that support from friends, relatives and the professional system are crucial in post adoption support in order to see positive outcomes for your child and your family. There is positive research evidence for this effect from the parent assessment stage all the way through to post-placement support. We work to build, maintain and inform the network surrounding your child. This completes our systemic approach to assessment, treatment and support.
Speak to one of our team to find out more: Call 020 7354 4161 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.