Two charities are launching a scheme in Staffordshire combining fostering and adoption, to give children the best start in life.
Carers are being recruited to act as foster parents for children up to the age of four, while a court makes a decision on whether they can return to their birth families - which can take up to six months.
Under the 'Concurrent Planning' service, which is run for Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Staffordshire County Council by charities Caritas Care and Adoption Matters, if it is determined that rehabilitation back to the birth family is not possible, the carers would then adopt the child.
Cathy Sowden, Concurrent Planning Service Manager said: “We make sure all our carers are made fully aware of the possibility that the child may be returned to the care of their birth family and that they are able to manage uncertainty.
"They are continually supported and prepared through our intensive training and support. This means that more children experience stability from a very early age and are given the best possible start in life."
Sue Spruce, Team Manager for the Stafford and Stoke service said: "Concurrent Planning puts the interests, long-term happiness and stability of children first at every stage. It’s the adults who need to cope with the uncertainty rather than babies and young children.
"t is evident that concurrent planning works and we want those who have considered adoption, now or in the past to consider coming forward as Concurrent Carers."
Information sessions are being held this week for people wanting to find out more:
- Wed 14 February 2018, 5.30-7.30 pm, M&S Community Room, 1st Floor, Wolstanton Retail Park, ST5 0AP
- Mon 5 March 2018, 5:30-7:30pm, Stafford Cricket Club, Riverway, Stafford, ST16 3WB