A group of 6 local councils and one adoption charity have been handpicked by the government to form one of the country's first Regional Adoption Agencies.

The new agency will see local councils and adoption agencies join forces with one single purpose - to place children waiting for adoption with their adoptive family without delay.

Adoption Focus, the City of Wolverhampton Council, Walsall, Dudley, Sandwell, Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Council are to become one of country's first Regional Adoption Agencies.

It means children waiting to be adopted in this area will be found stable, loving homes quicker than ever before thanks to new measures announced this week.

The partners had already operated as 2 nationally recognised adoption consortiums, Adoption in the Black Country and Adoption Focus and Shropshire Council and Telford and Wrekin Council Joint Adoption Service (JAS).

Children and Families Minister Edward Timpson, who grew up with 2 adopted brothers, said: "Every single day a child in the Midlands spends waiting in care for their new family is a further delay to a life full of love and stability - and so I'm delighted to announce one of the first Regional Adoption Agencies.

"Where adoption is proven to be in the best interest of the child, we have a moral mission to make sure they're matched quickly with the parents who are right for them - regardless of where they live.

"By coming together and joining forces, councils and adoption agencies across the region will be able to reach across artificial boundaries and access an ever growing pool of approved adopters, creating families quickly and successfully."

Speaking on behalf of the 2 consortiums, Councillor Val Gibson, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: "We are delighted that we have been handpicked by the Government to form one of the new regional adoption agencies.

"As individual consortiums our work has been noted at the highest levels and we are delighted that the 2 consortiums are beginning to look at ways of joining together and providing great outcomes for local children and adopters.

"The Government will provide financial and practical support to enable us to bring services together regionally, and implement the greatest step change in the way children are matched for adoption in a generation."

  • released: Thursday 22 October, 2015