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AdOpt is a sixteen session weekly group-based manualised programme, specifically aimed at the adoptive parents of children from 3-8 years old. It aims to create a supportive group environment with a strengths-based focus. It is informed by the evidence of what works in parenting with particular reference to social learning theory, attachment theory, brain science and the impact of trauma and neglect in the early years of life.
AdOpt is designed to get parents and children off to a healthy start. Within sessions there is a combination of: interactive learning, skill practice, and problem-solving using film clips and small group discussions. Examples of session content include: looking at the importance of play, ways to increase co-operation from your child, helping adopted children learn new behaviors, contact with birth families and promoting school success.
The group is delivered by two trained facilitators, one who is an adoptive parent and one a social work professional experienced in adoption work. An supervisor is also trained in the model with a view to providing managerial support to facilitators. Regular NIS consultation calls are provided to ensure effective delivery of the programme, and offer support where needed.
Parents receive a weekly phone call from one of the group facilitators to complete a Parent Weekly Report (PWR). Parents are asked to report on their child’s behaviours in the prior 24 hours saying whether or not certain behaviours occurred.
A range of outcome measures are regularly used to monitor the impact of the programme.