NSW continues to lead the nation in adoptions from out-of-home care with a record 140 adoptions finalised in 2017-18. Minister for Family and Community Services Pru Goward said this figure is more than double the number of children who were adopted from out-of-home care in 2015-16 when the NSW Government’s adoption reforms were introduced, and a further increase from last year’s record of 129 adoptions.

“NSW’s approach is giving more children the chance to thrive with a forever family,” Ms Goward said.“We want the best for our children and where they are not safe within their birth family, we want them to find that safety and permanency with a home that is theirs for life.”

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This year’s budget is investing $17 million to help achieve a goal of more than 1000 open adoptions over the next four years.This work will be done through the Adoptions Taskforce, which is dedicated to reducing red tape to halve the average time of the adoption order process.

Carers will also be given better support as part of a new program, My Forever Family, which will work to match children in out-of-home care with families that best meets their needs; this could be authorised carers who can support restoration with a child’s birth family, prospective guardians or adoptive parents.

My Forever Family also includes a dedicated recruitment strategy for Aboriginal people to ensure that Aboriginal children stay connected to their families and community.