Once couples are approved as permanent carers, they are considered for children currently within the Authority awaiting permanent placement. There is an initial exchange of written information between social workers. The assessment report for the couple is sent to the social worker for the child and the assessment report of the child and their needs is sent to the family placement social worker for the couple. The family placement social worker would share the information with the couple and discuss the possible match. Couples are not penalised in any way for not thinking it is an appropriate link and are in fact encouraged to consider the issues very carefully at this point.
A matching meeting is held between the workers, chaired by the Team Leader Family Placement. This considers the needs of the child and the best possible match to meet those needs. The matching meeting, if appropriate, will make a recommendation as to the best match.
The proposed match is then presented to the Approval and Matching Panel. The Approval and Matching panel will make a recommendation to the Agency Decision Maker, who makes the decision regarding the proposed match.