An adoption support charity in Bristol which offers lifelong support to adopted families has extended its services– thanks to over £300,000 of government funding

The Centre for Adoption Support and Education offers workshops, courses, activities and social events to help promote attachment – long after the children have been placed. And now The Centre, a sister charity of CCS Adoption, has increased access to therapeutic services after getting a grant from the Department of Education.

The funding was secured with the help of Richard Tidswell, of Business Doctors, who was adopted at birth and has since become a board trustee with the charity. Emma Simpson, centre manager at the site in Pennywell Road, said: “We are delighted to get the funding, which means we can more quickly assess families’ needs and get them the help they need.

“We will be able to provide therapy more widely, which can help address issues such as abuse, neglect and trauma in early childhood. This then helps children to better form attachments with family members and friends.

“Therapy can also help the adoptive parents develop better coping mechanisms. All in all, therapy can help create a more stable family life.”

Richard, who has worked with multi-million pound corporations, has become a trustee on a voluntary basis. He chairs a group to help establish the site as a regional Centre of Excellence. The married-father-of-two, who supports businesses across the Avon and Somerset area of the national network, said: “This is a charity close to my heart as I was adopted at birth. I’ve experienced the impact a loving family can make.

“I was happy to play a small part in assisting the board in setting out the long-term strategy for The Centre and securing the funding to make it happen. The team at CCS and The Centre do amazing work and their utter dedication makes such a difference to the lives of adopted families.”

The funding will help in three areas: complex assessment of families and therapeutic interventions; mediation with  birth families to assist with a child’s life story work and further development of the early permanence projects – placing children with adoptive families while court cases are ongoing.

Maggie Pitts, CCS Adoption CEO, said: “Our board has a variety of skills and knowledge and Richard brings a business discipline to the team. He is a team player and gave us a fresh perspective when it came to fundraising. I’m not sure we would have got the finances so quickly without his help.”

The Centre for Adoption Support and Education, rated as Outstanding by Ofsted, holds various groups for toddlers, school children and their families. It also runs workshops, such as yoga for attachment and singing for well-being.

John Barnes, chair of trustees for The Centre, said: “The Centre offers a variety of services, which helps to foster happier families. It continues to support families while the children are growing up, through to adulthood. It recognises the journey does not end simply by placing children in a home.”

The Centre is a place where families of adopted children can get together and share experiences. Training is also offered for parents, including in mindfulness, non-violent resistance and managing transitions. Therapeutic packages of support, such as play therapy, are also available.

For more information on The Centre for Adoption Support and Education, visit adoptionsupportcentre.org or Rachel on 0117 955 8826. Alternatively, email info@adoptionsupportcentre.org