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  • Writer's pictureSiobhan Rhodes

We have an exciting new partner!

We have been awarded funding from The Mighty Creatives to deliver on our Collecting the Diamonds story book project in a re imagined way to support families affected by the pandemic. We will be producing a digital animated story to reach a broad spectrum of the adoption and fostering community. There will also be hard copies of the book for the most vulnerable families.

Lockdown has seen us move into a new Create You Arts HQ (in Siobhan's Spare Room)

In developing this project we reflected on how Covid-19 is impacting families who come together through fostering and adoption. Adoption support is completely disrupted by COVID-19. Matching panels, birth parent meetings, life appreciation days and introductions are all working remotely or on hold all together. This presents a huge risk to adoption breakdowns and the mental health and wellbeing of adoptive families, already at a time most vulnerable. According to a survey on the home learning during lockdown by Adoption UK, 50% of parents and carers said their child has experienced emotional distress and anxiety during lockdown. There has been a lot of trauma and change in these children’s lives during this period of lockdown, from change in schedules to economic difficulties in the families. A huge number of children going back to school will not be in a good place.

We hope this book will portray the strength, courage and adaptability of children as they recover from loss and build lives with their forever family. We hope this picture book can inspire hope in all of us to change our perceptions of adoption.

The book will present a series of scenarios, which are common in adoptive children and show fun and engaging ways in which to support those needs. It will focus on four typical areas:

- Meal times (hoarding, overeating, and food obsessions)

- Hygiene (bathing, hair brushing, water fears)

- Bed time (sleep disorders, co-sleeping)

- Trauma

This book will reinforce therapeutic parenting to support families who are struggling to cope with their child’s challenging behaviour while under lockdown. Many adopted children need constant attention, which can create burnt out in parents who are also working from home. This book will create the opportunity for quiet reflection together as a family but also present activities that families can try together to manage behaviour.

This book by no means replaces or acts as a substitute for specialist therapeutic interventions but is a fun, free of charge activity that can show a positive but real adoption narrative.

We aim to improve outcomes for families who have adopted children with disabilities such as autism or be on the FASD to combat the stressed faces by drastic changes to their usual routines through presenting routine-based therapies in the book. The book also will explore taboo subjects such as child on parent aggression, which isolates parents.

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