Courts introduced to pioneering care process supporting babies in the care system

Concurrent planning will be the theme of a special event between adoption experts and the Cambridgeshire judiciary next week.

Judge Peter Greene will join the County Council’s Director of Children’s Social Care Niki Clemo and Jeanne Kaniuk, the Head of Adoption and Permanent Families Service at children’s charity Coram.

The County Council formed a partnership with Coram in 2011 to improve decision making and reduce delays in the adoption process.

Coram has a long-established reputation as a national centre of excellence for adoption and for sharing best practice with other organisations.

The main purpose of the partnership with Cambridgeshire is to further improve decision-making and minimise delays in the adoption process. The ultimate aim is to give more children and young people in care in the region a secure and stable future with an adoptive family, long term foster carers or legal guardians.

The event, on Tuesday (January 15), will also feature input from Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist Jenny Kenrick and Coram-Cambridgeshire Adoption Partnership Manager Barbro Loader, together with Contact Supervisors and Consultant Social Workers.

Concurrent planning is a child-centred process, pioneered by Coram, which places babies under two who have been taken into care, with carers who are approved to both foster and adopt them.

Concurrent carers are given special training and support, and look after the baby while bringing them for contact sessions with their birth parents. This allows the child to maintain a bond with their birth parents in case the court’s decision is to return them to their care.

Concurrent planning is appropriate for children whose birth parents are affected by issues such as substance misuse or domestic violence, which create a significant risk to the their well being.