Adoption and Fostering
According to the Department for Education (DE), there are approximately 70,000 children in care in the UK. Unfortunately, this figure has increased significantly over the last eight years.
We established Penny Appeal Adoption and Fostering to increase the numbers of carers. We share the belief that the best way to support children in care is to ensure they have a safe, suitable and stable home life.
The Penny Adoption and Fostering team works in the UK, with the ultimate objective to provide compassionate, nurturing and loving homes for vulnerable children and young people in care.
What we are doing
Community Engagement Recruitment Events
Brought to you by a qualified social worker with over 15 years of experience in the sector, our community events are enjoyable and informative ways to learn more about the pros and processes of adoption and fostering or the provisions available for Muslim children in care
We invite the Local Authority (LA) fostering and adoption teams, up to three Independent Fostering Provides (IFPs) and two voluntary Adoptions Agencies (VAAs). Our Community Engagement Workers (CEWs) are on hand to answer any questions and offer follow up support.
Could you be a Penny Appeal Ambassador?
We are inviting individuals and organisations with experience in fostering and adoption to work with Penny Appeal as ambassadors at our recruitment events. Full training and support will be provided.
Organise an Adoption and Fostering event
If you are a member of a community group who would like to hold an Adoption and Fostering event in your area, please don't hesitate to get in touch. We can support you through the process by designing and producing publicity materials and booking fostering and adoption providers to attend the event.
Assessment and Referrals
We are actively looking for families who can provide the love, care, and support these children need. Of course, our trained adoption and fostering advisors promise to be there for you every step of the way.
Penny Appeal's adoption and fostering referrals process offers applicants impartial access and advice regarding all the adoption and fostering providers in their area.
Our telephone assessments are informative and entirely confidential. If successful, we will refer prospective carers to the most appropriate and local fostering and adoption providers.
The adoption and fostering team will select the best four providers who have expressed an interest in an applicant, based on relationship with the local authority, Ofsted rating, and allowances.
The Penny Appeal referral service is the only one of its kind in the UK. Are you interested? We can help you. Call us on 07718645971 or email us [add link to contact form].
Islamic Adoption and Fostering Guide
A Freedom of Information (FOI) carried out by Penny Appeal in 2015 found that there are over 3,000 Muslim children in foster care each year, over half of whom spend some time living in non-Muslim homes.
The Penny Appeal Adoption and fostering team have collaborated with over 60 Islamic scholars from across the UK to compile an Islamic Adoption and Fostering Guide.
The booklet will cover the faith's perspective and virtues on adoption and fostering. Tailored specifically to the Muslim community, the guide is designed to highlight the position of the Muslim faith for those who are unsure about becoming foster carers or adopters.
The Islamic Adoption Guide and research will be available as a free download on this page from November 2017, and will be distributed to Adoption and Fostering providers and Islamic Centres throughout the UK.
Furthermore, Islamic scholars will write a Khutba (speech), which will be read out at Friday prayer in local areas before the recruitment events.
Working with adoption and fostering providers
Adoption and Fostering Anti-Discriminatory Practice Training
Tay Jiva is our adoption and fostering manager, with over 15 years of experience working with vulnerable children, offering anti-discriminatory practice (ADP) training to all service providers.
The ADP training will be in a 'train the trainers' format. Essentially, we are training social workers to work more effectively with people of the Muslim faith; however, the principles taught will apply to working with service users of any minority group. We are at the forefront of research and social care skills training, as we provide the only service upskilling social workers on faith matters in the UK.
Each representative will be given the presentation and notes from the training with the understanding that the representatives will commit to delivering the training in their own service within the following four months. The training will be over two days from 9.30am to 2.45pm.
In 2016, we commissioned Coventry University and CoramBAAF (the British Association of Adoption and Fostering) to carry our ground breaking academic research on adoption and fostering.
In the report, entitled "Among the last ones to leave? Understanding the Journeys of Muslim Children in the Care System,” Dr Sariya Cheruvallil explores the barriers the Muslim community face when it comes to adoption and fostering.
Dr Cheruvalli is a Muslim adopter who sits on the Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) board for CoramBAAF. The report should be available at the end of 2017, and will be shared with adoption and fostering providers throughout the country. The purpose of the study is to assist future understanding and engagement within Muslim communities and support the gap in cross-cultural services. If you would like to be involved in this research please contact the Adoption and Fostering team on 07718645971 or email us [add link to contact form].
Working with children in care
This year, we created Identity Box initiative, designed to help children in care maintain their faith, cultural and personal identity.
Our boxes are a high quality, and can be kept as keepsakes, or as storage for personal items.
For children of faith, a supplement can be included in the box. For example, Muslim children in care would receive:
- A booklet written by a Muslim sister who grew up in care
- Prayer mat
- Prayer beads
- Head covering
- Gift (e.g. small toy]
We are also offering supplements for other faith groups, depending on the requests submitted by the children’s social workers.
We believe that these small gestures can make life-changing differences for Muslim children in the British care system.
Get in touch
For further information, please do not hesitate to call the Penny Appeal Adoption and Fostering team on 07718645971 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Alternatively, you can call our contact centre on 03000 11 11 11 (free from mobile), 0800 731 0154 (free from landline), from 10am until 5pm and we will be happy to help.