By Hedi Argent.
BAAF Adoption and Fostering
Star rating: 4/5
“Everyone should try to have a grandmother or grandfather, or aunt or uncle – especially if they don’t have television.” This advice from a worldly eight year old sets the tone for Hedi Argent’s warm and practical book. It describes itself as a handbook for grandparents and others who may find themselves with newly adopted relatives and, as such, is full of sound advice, writes Chris Hanvey.
One in three of us are or will be grandparents and the role, often as holders of collective family memories, is vital for all children, but especially for those trying to make sense of new environments.
As such, grandparents – and other relatives – can welcome children into their new surroundings, provide a bridge across the generations and offer a respite from the intensity of newly forged relationships.
In readable terms, the book describes the adoption process, legal issues and concerns over, for example, connection and contact. Differences in religion, culture or ethnicity are also explored and the book is peppered with very readable quotations. It ends with a useful list of organisations and questions for young members to address. The case is eloquently made for grandparents and others – even for those with televisions.
Chris Hanvey is the UK director ofoperations, Barnardo’s.