£30m for quicker adoptions
The Government has pledged £30m to speed up finding adoptive parents for children in care in England.
The money will be provided this year to local authorities to cover costs they incur finding parents beyond their geographical borders.
It currently takes 18 months on average for children entering care in England to move in with adoptive families.
Campaigners welcomed the money but warned some children have “complex issues”, making adopters hard to find.
The funding, to be included in Wednesday’s Budget, will cover the £27,000 fee usually incurred by authorities to find parents outside their local area.
The fee covers the cost of finding, assessing and matching a parent and child. Adoptive parents are either found by another local authority or by a voluntary sector agency.
Prime Minister David Cameron said: “I am determined to tear down the barriers to children in care being found loving adoptive parents. The average time it takes to place a child with a new family has been falling and I am delighted we are able to offer this funding to try to ensure it falls further.”
The £30m funding could pay for more than a third of the 3,000 children currently in care to find a home.