Borough of Poole Cabinet has approved plans to establish a regional adoption agency (RAA) covering the whole of Dorset.
The new agency, Aspire Adoption, is the result of the merging of adoption services in Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole, as well as a local voluntary adoption agency, Families for Children, in a bid to enhance the adoption and permanence service available across the region.
Cllr Mike White, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Children, Young People and Capital Projects, Borough of Poole, said: “The new agency will allow us to create an effective regionalised adoption service which provides the very best support from all four partners, as well as minimising delay for both adopters and children. We are proud to be amongst the first in the country to forge ahead with the creation of an agency of this kind, and look forward to seeing the good work of our adoption team continue in partnership with others.”
Aspire Adoption has been formed following Government’s expectation that Regional Adoption Agencies are set up across England to enable better targeting for the recruitment of prospective adopters, speed up the matching and placement of children, improve adoption support services and potentially create efficiency savings.
Members were also asked to approve the business case which sets out how Bournemouth Borough Council will host the agency on behalf of the other partners.
It is anticipated the agency will launch in July 2017 with around 60 staff coming together to form the new organisation.