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Cornerstone Adoption Support Programme

Project start date: December 2014

We (Cornerstone) were awarded £520k to maximise the likelihood that children approved for adoption get more timely access to confident, skilled and well supported adoptive parenting. This was achieved through the testing of a wraparound adoption service including community recruitment, pre and post adoption mentoring and therapeutic parenting training.

Project Summary


Children waiting for adoption are experiencing a prolonged period prior to adoption, due to the mismatch between adopters and children waiting. The aim of the Cornerstone model was to improve early placement stability through better prepared and supported adopters, addressing the inconsistent provision of support and preparation for adopters during and into the placement.

We created a tripartite model of support including pre- and post-adoption mentoring by experienced adopters who were trained and supported to provide 1:1 support to prospective adopters; post-approval support groups with educational workshops and matching opportunities; and restorative parenting training and webinar-led programmes that provided access to tools, techniques, advice and relevant resources.

The training and mentoring of adoptive parents is continuing and now includes foster carers. To date, all LAs who were in the pilot continue to use the model.

Find out more

Project contact details

Helen Costa

Chief Executive

0162 863 6376

Project evaluators

University of Sussex

Project partners

Royal Borough Windsor and Maidenhead, Bracknell Forest BC, Wokingham BC, West Berkshire BC, LB Hammersmith and Fulham, LB Westminster, LB Kensington and Chelsea, LB Ealing, LB Hounslow, Slough Children’s, Services Trust, Reading BC, DDP Institute, Coram BAAF



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