Journal Article

Supporting the Birth Relatives of Adopted Children: How Accessible Are Services?

Jeanette Cossar and Elsbeth Neil

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 40, issue 5, pages 1368-1386
Published in print July 2010 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online May 2009 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Supporting the Birth Relatives of Adopted Children: How Accessible Are Services?

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This paper focuses on how birth relatives in England and Wales can access adoption support services, using data obtained from a mapping study of adoption support services. The survey aimed to gather data from all local authority adoption agencies, voluntary adoption agencies and adoption support agencies in the second half of 2005. The questionnaire included questions relating to how local authorities provided birth relative support services, how birth relatives could access them and how agencies promoted them. The response rate was 63 per cent. Answers to open questions relating to the provision of services and access were examined. Four patterns were found in relation to local authority arrangements for provision of services and the role of the independent sector in these. Seven different models of accessing services were identified. Low uptake of services was found to be a problem and the advantages and disadvantages of the different models of accessing services are discussed.

Keywords: Adoption; birth family support services; adoption support

Journal Article.  7298 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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