This document sets out the Statement of Purpose of Adoption Services for Adults (hereafter referred to as ASFA) as required by the Adoption Support Agencies Regulations.
The Statement of Purpose is reviewed annually and is readily available to all those who may wish to see it:
- Adopted adults
- Birth relatives of adopted adults, including descendants of adopted adults
- Adoptive parents
- Other interested parties, e.g. volunteers
- Local Authorities and Health and Social Care Trusts
- General public
Upon request, arrangements can be made for the Statement of Purpose to be translated, explained or produced in a different format to suit the needs of services users.
ASFA undertakes to provide a range of adoption support services. ASFA is registered with OFSTED as an Adoption Support Agency and operates within the requirements of the following primary and secondary legislation and guidance
- The Adoption and Children Act 2002
- The Data Protection Act 1998
- The Human Rights Act 1998
- The Care Standards Act 2000
- The National Adoption Standards 2002
- The National Minimum Standards for Adoption Support Agencies
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF ASFA
To provide information, assistance, support and specialised services as appropriate to adopted adults, birth relatives and descendants of adopted adults, and adoptive parents whose sons and daughters are now adults, in response to needs arising as a consequence of adoption, or an experience that is identical to adoption apart from the making of an adoption order.
To make available specialist services that may alleviate distress that can result from the reunion of an adopted adult with members of his/her birth family, or when such reunion is sought but unattainable.
To increase the understanding of professionals who may encounter the people ASFA supports in the course of their work, and provide information about the needs and concerns of people affected by adoption to the general public, including those involved in the media.
To respond to requests for assistance from adopted people and their adult relatives to either provide the appropriate adoption support service needed, or signpost the enquirer to another more appropriate provider.
To provide information, practical guidance and a range of services that enable members to safely locate people related to them and from whom they were separated by adoption.
To link with a location service provider and provide an intermediary service for those persons who are unable, or choose not, to undertake their own search for a lost relative.
To provide a skilled and effective intermediary service to responsibly facilitate renewed contact between people who were separated from each other by adoption.
To address the need of adults affected by adoption for broader and deeper understanding of the impact of adoption upon their lives.
To provide Training and Consultancy Services on a range of adoption support issues relating to the needs of adults to Local Authorities, Adoption Agencies, other Adoption Support Agencies, and to other bodies that appropriately need our services, including undertaking work on behalf of other agencies that is appropriate and in line with this statement of purpose.
To enhance the sense of their identity amongst service users by respecting their personal history, culture, language, religion and ethnicity.
To continue to develop professional skills and knowledge in order to deliver a legal, safe and practical service.
To monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and quality of services provided by ASFA
To actively involve service users, where appropriate or possible, in the provision and development of services.
To work to ASFA’s Policies, Procedures and Standards in relation to the safeguarding of children; equal opportunities; complaints; finance; health and environmental safety, security and management of risk; monitoring and evaluation; volunteer and contractor recruitment and management, and user-focussed services.
To advise, support, assist and counsel those who are using the services of ASFA or for whom those services may be appropriate.
To support, assist and counsel the people who are contacted by ASFA at the request of service users, and assist members of the public who seek assistance from ASFA when contacted directly by a relative from whom they were separated by adoption.
To ensure that the services offered by ASFA address the lifelong implications of adoption for all concerned.
To support the provision of the services by utilising an efficient and effective administrative system.
EXPERIENCE AND FACILITIES
ASFA’s Responsible Individual has the required qualifications and experience in the form of:
- Certificate of Qualification in Social Work (CQSW) - Brunel University
- Post Qualification Certificate in Social Work (PQ1) - Bournemouth University
- MA in Applied Social Studies - Brunel University
- Diploma in Voluntary Sector Management - Cass Business School, City University
- Working with adopted adults and their relatives in local authority and in the voluntary sector
- Birth Records Counselling to adopted adults, Access to Adoption Files for adopted adults, Intermediary Services for adopted adults and birth relatives (including descendants of adopted adults), support groups and events for adopted adults, birth relatives and adopters
ASFA’s registered individual and all contractors and others providing services for ASFA have an up to date DBS disclosure, and this is renewed in accordance with regulations. Written details are available on request.
All records are securely maintained in accordance with regulations, are retained and accessible to properly constituted authorities when required and with appropriate notice. Written templates for record keeping are available on request.
The confidentiality of all records and information, and their protection in case of risk from fire, water or other disaster is treated with paramount importance.
The premises used by ASFA are fit and suitable for providing the services specified in this Statement of Purpose.
The Registered Provider is ASFA:
PO Box 4621, Marlow, Buckinghamshire, SL7 9DG. Tel: 01628 481954
The Responsible Individual is Jean Milsted
PO Box 4621, Marlow, Buckinghamshire, SL7 9DG.
Tel: 01628 481954
Email: Jean@milsteds.plus.com or Jean@adoptionservicesforadults.org.uk
CONDITIONS OF REGISTRATION UNDER PART 2 OF THE CARE STANDARDS ACT 2000
- Adoption Support Services to adults affected by adoption
- The provision of intermediary services
- The Society is Registered with OSTED with the Certificate of Registration issued on 29/05/2013; Registration number: SC463447
ASFA offers services that support and assist adults whose lives have been affected by adoption. ASFA also provides services that increase the knowledge, skills and resources of professionals working in adoption agencies and adoption support agencies to enhance their capacity to work effectively with adults affected by adoption.
The services provided to the general public are:
- An advice and information service
- Specialist Intermediary Services
- Information leaflets
- Facebook page to share information and encourage comments
For professionals ASFA provides:
- Training events developing intermediary and access to information skills
Under contract or through ‘spot purchasing’, ASFA can provide to local authorities:
- Birth Records Counselling under Schedule 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002
- Provision of intermediary services under Section 98 Adoption and Children Act 2002
- Access to information services for pre-commencement adoptions under the Adoption Agencies Regulations 1983
ASFA has a clearly defined Safeguarding policy and procedure that will be reviewed regularly. Policies and procedures will be followed at all times and all safeguarding actions will be recorded.
MONITORING AND EVALUATION
ASFA strives to ensure that its services are effective and efficient, and continually monitors and evaluates its operations and administrative procedures. Feedback from service users will be taken very seriously and will be the basis for review and improvement of all services.
All service users will be provided at the outset with information about the complaints procedures. .
SUMMARY OF COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
ASFA positively encourages comments and criticisms concerning its services. ASFA has a formal Complaints Procedure; details of this are made available to all service users at their first point of contact with ASFA.
If the complainant and ASFA are unable to resolve any dissatisfaction informally, then the formal Complaints Procedure will be implemented without delay.
Complaints may also be directed to OFSTED: www.ofsted.org.uk
THE NAME, ADDRESS AND TELEPHONE NUMBER OF THE REGISTRATION AUTHORITY:
OFSTED, Piccadilly Gate, Store Street, Manchester, M1 2WD
Helpline: 0300 123 1231 Text phone / Minicom users: 0161 618 8524
Fax: 08456 404049 Typetalk Prefix: 18001
AVAILABILITY OF SERVICE
All adopted adults, birth relatives and adoptive parents of adopted adults are able to apply for services, and under regulation ASFA will need to decide if the services on offer are appropriate. If not, ASFA may signpost people to other service providers. There is no geographical restriction on service provision, but services can only be provided to people where the adoption was arranged in England or Wales.
ASFA does charge for services provided, and some service users may be able to access similar services for free, or at a lower charge, from or via their local authorities. ASFA may advise people to consider other service providers before commissioning its work.
ASFA is aware of the highly sensitive nature of records relating to adoption. The services are regulated to ensure that records are protected. Data protection principles are also conformed with, and ASFA is registered with the Information Commissioner's Office to reinforce that these principles are adhered to and taken seriously.