Following a tendering process, the Scottish Government has announced that from 1 September, Scotland’s Kinship Care Advice Service (KCASS) will be run in collaboration by AFA Scotland and Adoption UK Scotland. The KCASS is funded by the Scottish Government with the purpose of delivering the best possible support to kinship carers who play such a critical role in providing secure, stable and nurturing homes for children who cannot be cared for by their birth parents. The new collaboration brings together the skills and experience of the two organisations along with a more formalised link to CPAG (Child Poverty Action Group).
Adoption UK Scotland brings its experience of providing successful support services using a model that involves service users as an integral part of the way the services are managed and delivered. Historically AUK worked almost exclusively with adoptive families, but more recently their services have had a wider focus, including the establishment of Scotland’s successful national FASD Hub.
AFA Scotland brings experience of supporting practitioners and agencies from every part of Scotland and helping to shape and develop policy and practice across all the disciplines involved in working with children and those who care for them.
The services and training provided by AFA Scotland, including its postgraduate Relative Matters course on kinship care, reflect the central importance of kinship care for children unable to live with their own parents and the growing recognition of the need to improve support to the people who care for them. The service will build on the work already undertaken by the KCASS and will work as collaboratively as possible with the well-established kinship groups across the country.
The existing provider, Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) is working closely with AUK Scotland and AFA Scotland to ensure that the transition happens smoothly for all those currently receiving advice and support, and we would welcome ideas, comments and suggestions from anyone involved to help shape the service as it develops. A "Frequently Asked Questions" sheet has been prepared and is available on the Kinship. Scot website - here.
RECRUITMENT OF KINSHIP CARE CONSULTANT
As stated above, AFA Scotland’s role will be to provide support and training to practitioners and agencies and support work to develop policy and practice at local and national level and is currently recruiting for a full time Kinship Care Consultant to lead this work. This recruitment process is now closed.