CVAA’s role in the UK

CVAA has increased its role in effectively influencing policy and practice in the UK at national, regional and local levels. Over the past three years we have responded both to tremendous opportunities and challenges in a fast changing adoption landscape. We are now more able than ever to create change and improve outcomes in the lives of children and families. Member agencies, both large and small, have been critical to our success and together we have flourished, we have shared learning, we have taken risks and we have started to unleash the power of innovation.

In England, CVAA has been pivotal in shaping and driving the reform agenda and we have convinced the DfE that a strong VAA sector is a crucial step towards the sustainable reform of the adoption system. We have maximised our position of influence and successfully argued for £1.25million of Government funding for VAAs which enabled a 35% growth in adopter approvals. This has been followed by CVAA winning the DfE contract to manage the £13milion VAA Expansion Grant Programme 2014-16. We have launched ‘It’s All About Me’, the first social impact bond in the world set-up by providers. This places CVAA in an important position in this emerging field. The ALB, which is the principal forum for driving improvements in the adoption system, was designed and implemented by CVAA and we manage the work of the Board. CVAA has persuaded DfE that VAAs, together with Adoption Support Agencies (ASAs), are extremely well positioned to play a major role in addressing the significant gaps in adoption support services.

In the Isle of Man, the Children’s Centre is contracted to provide adoption services on behalf of the Manx Government. The Government is exploring how adoption support services should be delivered and funded and has sought the views of CVAA. The Children’s Centre is actively seeking advice from CVAA about business development opportunities which include the delivery of adoption support services.

In Northern Ireland, the Trusts (Local Authorities) are refusing to purchase placements from VAAs which puts the future viability of the sector in question. This issue is compounded by the fact that Northern Ireland has more approved adopters than children waiting for an adoptive placement. CVAA is actively supporting the remaining VAA in the Province to ensure it has a viable future.

In Scotland, CVAA is providing support to Scottish VAAs who are engaged with the Scottish Government on adoption reform. VAAs, LAs and the Scottish Government are actively discussing the implications for Scottish children of the potential for more English children being placed in Scotland as a result of the growth agenda in England. The CVAA data collection model has been offered up to the Scottish Government to promote better planning of services. VAAs are represented on the Scottish Government’s review of speeding up assessment processes from initial enquiry to approval.

In Scotland, CVAA is providing support to Scottish VAAs who are engaged with the Scottish Government on adoption reform. VAAs, LAs and the Scottish Government are actively discussing the implications for Scottish children of the potential for more English children being placed in Scotland as a result of the growth agenda in England. The CVAA data collection model has been offered up to the Scottish Government to promote better planning of services. VAAs are represented on the Scottish Government’s review of speeding up assessment processes from initial enquiry to approval.