Often people hear about the distress of children in other countries and want to offer to adopt one of them. However, children’s best interests are not always served by being adopted away from their own families, included extended family and culture.
Aid agencies tell us that children who become separated from their parents during crisis, such as natural disasters and civil wars, can very often be reunited with their families once things have calmed down. For those children who are not able to grow up in their own families, many countries are now developing their own adoption and fostering services. However, this can take time and meanwhile, adoption by a family from another country may meet the needs of some children.
Adopting a child from abroad is not an easy option. It is important to take time to look beyond the immediate wish to help a child in need and think about the implications for the child and for you in the long term. Children whose families and communities have been unable to care for them will need a lot of help and understanding from their adoptive parents to develop a positive sense of their own identity and to understand why they have been adopted in another country.
Children who have been cared for in a large institution or for those for whom there is very little information about their birth family may develop emotional and health problems as they grow up.
Brighton and Hove have a contract with a Voluntary Adoption Agency called PACT which undertakes Inter Country Assessments on our behalf. PACT is able to provide extensive information on Intercountry Adoption and are experts in this field.
Should you wish to take forward an application to become an approved adopter for a child from another country and you live in Brighton and Hove you should contact PACT. Their telephone number is: 0800 7311 845
A fee is charged for assessment as an Inter Country adopter. Please contact PACT for the up-to-date fee structure. The fee is charged to cover the cost of taking up statutory checks with the criminal records bureau and other relevant agencies and also for the completion of an assessment report by a qualified and experienced social worker. The process for the approval of an adopter for a child overseas comes within National Adoption Standard time scales of eight months for all adoptive applicants. The application has to be considered by the PACT Adoption Panel and is approved by the PACT Agency Decision Maker.
If the Agency Decision Maker agrees to your approval, your papers will be sent to the Department of Health for them to review and consider whether a certificate of eligibility will be issued. PACT will liaise with you about sending papers to your country of choice and will advise and support you until a child is placed for adoption with you. In most cases, support will be provided by Brighton and Hove City Council Adoption Agency post placement. PACT will provide you with information about this process.