The Adoption and Fostering Alliance Scotland created.
The Minister confirmed that ÂŁ75,000 funding has been invested to allow the Adoption and Fostering Alliance Scotland (AFAS) to take on vital support services following the closure of the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF).
AFAS will be responsible for training, consultancy and expert advice to professionals â€“ areas that BAAF Scotland had led on in the past. BAAF Scotland staff will transfer to the new organisation.
This follows the appointment of St Andrewâ€™s Childrenâ€™s Society to run Scotlandâ€™s Adoption Register in July.
Aileen Campbell, Minister for Children and Young People, said:
â€śWe know that having a secure, stable and supportive home is vital to a childâ€™s well-being. When children are no longer able to live at home it is vital that there are effective services in place with knowledgeable, confident professionals who can support children into appropriate, alternative care placements. The importance of maintaining the services that match and keeps them together is clear. It impacts the young personâ€™s mental and physical health, improves their performance in school and sets them on the road to a successful and fulfilling life and this must be a priority for us all.
â€śWeâ€™ve worked very closely with the sector and local authorities since we were made aware of the unfortunate collapse of BAAF to ensure that the support and services it provided remains in place in Scotland. We acted quickly in July to secure the national Adoption Register and today we are announcing the creation of Adoption and Fostering Alliance Scotland. This means that families and their support workers know that they can continue to access training and advice from specialists.
â€śThis funding means that we have ensured that no services have been lost following the closure of BAAF, protecting the support for families and the professionals who work with them. We have also protected the majority of BAAF Scotland jobs.â€ť
Rhona Pollock, Legal Consultant, Adoption and Fostering Alliance Scotland, said:
â€śWe are delighted to be able to offer an independent, multi-disciplinary Scottish voice that supports those involved with children and families and those affected by adoption, fostering and kinship care. We will strive to promote permanently better lives for children in Scotland and look forward to working with other agencies in achieving this.â€ť
Alistair Gaw, President of Social Work Scotland (SWS) and Head of Children’s Services at Edinburgh City Council, said:
â€śWe wholeheartedly welcome the arrival of Adoption and Fostering Alliance Scotland. Children requiring care across the country and the Social Work professionals on whom they rely benefitted greatly from the services of BAAF Scotland and this new development means much of that expertise will not be lost.â€ť
Dr Susan Dewar of the Scottish Medical Adviserâ€™s Forum said:
â€śFrom the health perspective it is essential to have access to advice, support, guidance and training that is both expert and independent in the field of adoption and fostering in Scotland.
â€śWe are delighted that the Scottish Government has acted so swiftly following the demise of BAAF to ensure that this level of expertise is retained and that through AFAS a dedicated service will be available in the future to support all those professionals working with and for Scotlandâ€™s most vulnerable children and young people.â€ť