What is adoption?

Adoption is a way of giving a child the love and security of family life when they cannot live with the family they were born into. It is a legal procedure.  When a child becomes adopted they become a full member of their new family, taking the family name. Adoption truly is a life changing experience, both for children and adopters.

There are many reasons that children might need a new family. There are children of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.  Some are single children and some are sibling groups. 

Fostering for Adoption

Last year Cornwall Council placed eight young babies with their adoptive parents via a fostering for adoption arrangement.

Fostering for adoption is when a child is placed with adopters who are temporarily approved as foster carers.  This is whilst the Court decides the future plan for the child.

If the Court agrees that the child should be adopted, and the adoption agency feels that it is the right family for the child, then they go on to adopt the child.

Fostering for adoption arrangements only occur where there is clear evidence to the Local Authority that there is very little likelihood that the birth parents, or other members of their family can take care of the child.

For the child, this means that they have less moves, and this can help them greatly in terms of their attachment to their carers / adoptive parents.

Concurrent planning

Concurrent carers foster a child whilst the Court decides the future plan for the child.

During this time, the child will regularly see their birth parents.  The carers need to support the birth families efforts to regain the care of their children.

If the Court decides that the birth family are able to care for the child, the child will return to their care.  The concurrent carers will need to support this.

However, if the Court decides that adoption is in the best interests of the child, the child remains with the concurrent carers who will adopt them.

The children

There are lots of different children in Cornwall who need adoptive families. When a child needs a new family, we look in the first instance at our own approved adopters to see if they might be able to meet the needs of the child. If none of those prospective adopters “match”, we look to our colleagues in other local authorities and agencies to see if they might have suitable families.

Here are some examples of children who need a loving family:

Sophie and Jack

Sophie and Jack are siblings who need a new home together. They are happy and energetic children who love to play outside and go to the beach. Sophie is doing well at nursery and has lots of friends there. Jack enjoys going to toddler group and likes to dance.


Samuel is a delightful little boy who likes to draw and make things. He enjoys school and is keen to learn. Samuel has extra help with some subjects. Samuel would like a new family who like to go on bike rides and have lots of pets.


Jasmine is a lively, happy cheeky little girl who loves to giggle. Jasmine likes to sing along to music – Disney songs are her favourite. Jasmine loves to sit and read with her foster carer. Jasmine has good friends at school and has made great progress there lately.

Read our Easy Read guide to adoption

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