The Moving to Adoption Practice Research study was motivated by concerns that the traditional UK approach to moving children from foster care into adoptive families might not be the most suitable approach for some children and their foster and adoptive families. In some cases, moves are distressing and abrupt for children and highly emotional for adopters and foster carers. Where moves to adoption are difficult and distressing, there may be links to poorer child outcomes and even disruption. Professionals have expressed uncertainty about how to plan and support these moves in a more child focused way.

The aim of this project was to develop and pilot a practice programme for professionals who are supporting children’s moves to adoption.  This practice programme would be informed by theory and research and would address the issues outlined above by promoting some changes in social work practice in this area.  The feedback from the piloting of the practice programme would inform next steps in developing and disseminating the programme in order to achieve a more widespread impact on practice.

The research has now concluded, and AFA Scotland has arranged for one of the project team, Dr Mary Beek, to come to Scotland to present their findings and consider the implications for practice in Scotland. Some of the areas looked at include current practice in moving children from foster care to adoption and how this can be improved, how plans should be directed and how can children be helped to think about and process their feelings about their foster family after adoption. Contact with foster carers after a child moves has also been considered. Key principles for planning a move to adoption have been developed and there is practice guidance to accompany this. 

Mary is a Senior Research Associate at the University of East Anglia and is well known for her work with Gillian Schofield on developing the Secure Base Model.

As well as hearing from Mary, there will be the opportunity to hear presentations from Scottish agencies about work being undertaken locally in this area, including a survey of foster carers undertaken by staff at Scotland's Adoption Register see attached

This issue is currently very "live" in Scotland and the seminar provides an opportunity to consider how we might apply the research and develop practice in our agencies.

If you would like to attend our forthcoming seminar, please download an application form here


An evaluation report of Adoption Week Scotland 2018 has been produced.  To download a copy, please click here.

We can confirm the dates for 2019 which will again be organsied by AFA Scotland and Adoption UK will be:

Monday 18 November - Friday 22 November, 2019


Adoption UK are experiencing difficulty with their emails.  A temporary email has been created where you can contact all members of the team - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or you can call the office on 0131  322 8501.



AFA Scotland was delighted to launch a new good practice guide at the end of last year which was the culmination of 18 months' work by the project group which has been investigating the use of video clips in family finding.

The guidance is designed to help social workers and foster carers who are most likely to make the videos, but also to address the concerns of others within organisations who have questions about the technical and legal issues involved.  Hard copies of the guide have been circulated to all agencies.  A PDF version can befound in our Learning Zone / Downloads area and can also be downloaded here.

As this is a subject where practice and technology will continue to develop, we will adapt the guidance to reflect changes in the future.  If you have any feedback or suggestions for additions/amendments, please get in touch with Maggie - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Adoption Week Scotland Roundup

AFA Scotland and Adoption UK Scotland were again responsible for organising Adoption Week Scotland running from Monday 19th to Saturday 24th November, and were delighted with the success of the programme. The attendance of the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, at the opening conference gave a really positive message about the Scottish Government’s recognition of the importance of adoption and helped ensure a high level of interest throughout the week. Linking to the fact that 2018 was designated the Year of Young People, the theme for the week was hearing the voice of adopted young people. A group, supported by Scottish Adoption and St Andrew’s Children’s Society, set up the Adopted Voices project and have worked together for 18 months talking about their own experiences and working out how to have their views and ideas heard by parents, professionals and policy makers. Their production of a superb video, organisation of the conference programme and powerful presentations on the day proved to be an excellent way of highlighting both the positives and the challenges of adoption and the clear implications for the way practice and policy should develop.

Two family events and four information events were held in different parts of the country during the course of the week with Maree Todd, the Minister for Children and Young people attending the last of these in Musselburgh.

It was particularly encouraging to see the amount of activity organised by other agencies to coincide with the week’s main events. AFA Scotland and Adoption UK will be running Adoption Week Scotland again next year, so while memories of this year’s programme are still fresh in the mind please do get in touch to share your ideas about how we can ensure the week has the maximum impact right across the country.


We are delighted that First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will attend our conference on Monday 19 November to mark the start of Adoption Week Scotland.    The week is supported by the Scottish Government.  To mark the Year of Young People 2018, the conference, Adopted Voices is giving a group of adopted young people the opportunity to have their views and experiences heard by parents, professionals and policy makers.

To read full press release, please click here

AFA Scotland is registered as a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) - SC046417