Guest post by Miranda Davies and Roger Bullock, Adoption & Fostering Journal
The British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) run National Adoption Week each year to raise awareness of the issues involved in adoption and to encourage prospective parents to come forward. In 2014, the week focuses on siblings and adoption. To support the week, relevant articles from Adoption & Fostering, the BAAF journal, will be made freely available throughout November. Miranda Davies, the journal manager, and Roger Bullock, the editor, had the following to say about National Adoption Week’s theme this year:
“Recent statistics obtained by BAAF show that around 50% of all children for whom local authorities are trying to find adopters have brothers and sisters. Where possible these children should stay together. This month’s National Adoption Week (3–9 November) aims to raise awareness of this issue and encourage potential parents to come forward. Although being placed with siblings may not be right for every child, it is important to do everything possible for children for whom it is in their best interests to stay together. In the words of BAAF’s Interim Chief Executive, Barbara Hutchinson:
“Sibling relationships are very important and can be very special. They can provide mutual support, love and constancy. For children who have had an unsettled and uncertain start in life, it can be especially devastating to then lose their brothers and sisters.”
The significance of sibling relationships are also known to increase over the lifespan (Sanders, A&F 33:3, 2009).
The widespread public and media attention generated by BAAF’s annual National Adoption Week makes it an extremely effective recruitment tool for finding families and thus transforming the lives of thousands of vulnerable children. As editors of Adoption & Fostering, we are delighted to support this year’s initiative by flagging up articles on siblings that have been published in the journal since the 1980s ‒ from a study of siblings placed together (Rushton, Treseder and Quinton, 1989) to the development of a special tool for social workers tasked with deciding whether or not to split up groups of siblings for placement in adoptive or long-term foster homes (Farnfield, 2009) and the motivations and experiences of adults seeking contact with adopted siblings (Ludvigsen and Parnham, 2004). By drawing attention to these and other articles we hope to highlight the relevance of this neglected area of research.”
To support NAW, SAGE is delighted to make the below articles freely accessible throughout November:
- ‘A Modified Strange Situation Procedure for Use in Assessing Sibling Relationships and their Attachment to Carers’ by Steve Farnfield, April 2009, Vol 33.1 pp 4-17
- ‘Thinking about Siblings Who are Fostered Together’ by Debbie Hindle, March 1995. Vol 19, Issue 1 pp 14-20
- ‘Sibling Relationships for Children in the Care System’ by Marjut Kosonen, October 1994, Vol. 18, issue 3, pp. 30-35
- ‘Searching for Siblings: The Motivations and Experiences of Adults Seeking Contact with Adopted Siblings’ by Anna Ludvigsen and Jo Parnham, December 2004; vol. 28 issue 4.
- ‘The Experience of Living with a Foster Sibling, as Described by the Birth Children of Foster Carers: A Thematic Analysis of the Literature’ by Hayley Thompson and Susan McPherson, July 2011, Vol 35 issue 2.
- ‘Sibling Groups in Permanent Placements’ by Alan Rushton, Judy Treseder, and David Quinton, December 1989; vol. 13, issue 4.
- ‘The Sibling Relationships of Adopted Children and Patterns of Contact after Adoption’ by Elsbeth Neil, April 1999, vol. 23, issue 1.
- ‘Meeting the Needs of Sibling Groups in Care’ by Kirstie Maclean, April 1991, vol. 15, issue 1.
- ‘Assessing Siblings for Family Placement’ by Patricia Bellwood, October 1985, Vol 9, issue 3.
- ‘Splitting Siblings’ by Tony Morrison and Jacquie Brown, December 1986, Vol 10, issue 4.
- ‘To Split or Not to Split: The Placement of Siblings’ by Mary Jones and Rosalind Niblett, July 1985, Vol 9 issue 2.