chapter  5
ByFelicity Collier
Pages 5

Assessing the suitability of adults to adopt a child is, arguably, one of the most awesome tasks which a social worker faces. The responsibility is enormous – on the one hand, you have a child who is very likely to have suffered abuse and neglect, sometimes of the most appalling nature; this child will also have experienced at least one profound loss in being separated from its birth mother and probably many more, both before and after coming into the care of the local authority. Such children only have social workers to protect their future. They will find it difficult to trust a new family, they may well test them to their limits and for a significant number (probably one in five) the adoption will not work out and the child will be returned, even more lonely and traumatised, back into ‘care.’