A Message from Wendy – Jul 2021 -

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As we enter the summer holiday period I wanted to let you all know what is happening at St.David’s.

Following latest Welsh Government advice, we continue to work from home when we can. As we cannot guarantee that social distancing guidelines can be adhered to, we are unable at the present time to open the office for information sessions for those enquiring about adoption or for the preparation to adopt training. As we have been doing over the past 17 months, all these services remain accessible on line and we very much welcome enquiries from those wishing to know more about adoption and the children who are waiting for a family.

We continue to undertake assessments of prospective adopters through a mix of face to face and online sessions and this has worked well throughout the pandemic. Our adoption support services also follow a similar pattern of face to face and online support sessions depending on individual circumstances and individual needs. As ever we want to balance up safety in respect of health alongside recognising that for some this has been a very isolating, difficult and anxiety provoking time.

We did have an outside meet up of a number of families earlier this month which was great and we are constantly keeping under review whether we can do more of the same. Unfortunately, we were unable to have our summer celebration event this year and any plans for a winter celebration will be very dependent on Welsh Government national guidelines. We do however remain optimistic that 2022 will be the year we can at last all meet together indoors and outdoors and spend collective time and fun together.

I know the past few months have remained challenging with the unpredictability of the virus never far from us all – the impact on that for children being sent home from school to self-isolate if one in their bubble has covid has been particularly tough for children and their parents.

I do hope that whatever your individual plans are for the summer you are able to have time to relax take some time to recharge your batteries and most importantly at whatever stage you are in the adoption journey, enjoy! Please don’t hesitate to contact us either by phoning 02920 667007 or info@stdavids.org if we can help in anyway.

On behalf of all the staff at St.David’s we send our warmest wishes to you all












Wrth i ni ddechrau ar gyfnod gwyliau’r haf, hoffwn rhoi gwybod i chi gyd beth sy’n digwydd yn Dewi Sant.

Gan dilyn cyngor diweddaraf Llywodraeth Cymru, rydym yn parhau i weithio gartref pan allwn. Gan na allwn warantu y gellir cadw at ganllawiau ymbellhau cymdeithasol, ni allwn agor y swyddfa ar hyn o bryd ar gyfer sesiynau gwybodaeth i’r rhai sy’n holi am fabwysiadu neu hyfforddiant baratoi i fabwysiadu. Fel yr ydym wedi bod yn ei wneud dros y 17 mis diwethaf, mae’r holl wasanaethau hyn yn parhau i fod ar gael ar-lein ac rydym yn croesawu ymholiadau gan y rhai sy’n dymuno gwybod mwy am fabwysiadu a’r plant sy’n aros am deulu.

Rydym yn parhau i gynnal asesiadau drwy gymysgedd o sesiynau wyneb yn wyneb ac ar-lein ac mae hyn wedi gweithio’n dda drwy gydol y pandemic. Mae ein gwasanaethau cymorth mabwysiadu hefyd yn dilyn patrwm tebyg o sesiynau cymorth wyneb yn wyneb ac ar-lein yn dibynnu ar amgylchiadau ac anghenion unigol. Fel arfer, rydym am gydbwyso diogelwch a iechyd a chydnabod bod hwn wedi bod yn amser ynysu, anodd a phrydus i bawb.

Cawsom gyfarfod tu allan gyda nifer o deuluoedd yn gynharach y mis hwn a oedd yn wych ac rydym yn parhau i adolygu a allwn wneud mwy o hyn yn y dyfool agos. Yn anffodus, nid oeddem yn gallu cael ein digwyddiad dathlu haf eleni a bydd unrhyw gynlluniau ar gyfer dathliad gaeaf yn dibynnu’n fawr ar ganllawiau cenedlaethol Llywodraeth Cymru. Fodd bynnag, rydym yn parhau i fod yn obeithiol bydd 2022 yn y flwyddyn y gallwn gyfarfod â’n gilydd dan do ac yn yr awyr agored a threulio amser gyda’n gilydd, o’r diwedd.

Rwy’n gwybod bod y misoedd diwethaf wedi bod yn heriol gyda natur anrhagweladwy’r feirws a  mae’r effaith ar hynny a’r blant sy’n cael eu hanfon adref o’r ysgol i hunanynysu os oes gan un yn eu swigod covid wedi bod yn arbennig o anodd i blant a’u rhieni.

Rwy’n gobeithio, beth bynnag yw eich cynlluniau ar gyfer yr haf, y gallwch gael amser i ymlacio, ac yn bwysicaf oll ar ba gam bynnag yr ydych yn y daith fabwysiadu, mwynhewch! Mae croeso i chi gysylltu a ni trwy ffonio 02920 667007 neu e-bostio info@stdavids.org .

Ar rhan holl staff Dewi Sant, rydym yn anfon ein dymuniadau cynhesaf atoch i gyd.










Connected is the name of a bespoke service for adopted children age 7- 10, young people age 11 – 25 years old, and an 18-25 year old group.

The monthly groups aim to improve children and young peoples’ self-confidence, build self-esteem and reduce the sense of isolation which some adopted children experience and also develop life skills. This is achieved by offering a range of activities such as art, drama, circus skills, healthy eating/cooking and music sessions to name but a few.

Find out the full details here.

These monthly sessions are offered in limited areas at the moment (Carmarthen, Swansea and Cardiff, and soon to be in Brecon and south east Wales) however we hope over time more groups may be developed and become available across Wales.

Want to know more? If you are interested in our existing groups or would like to express interest in a group starting in your area, please complete the Enquiry Form on the link above and send to wales@adoptionuk.org.uk


The St. David’s Children Society Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with Cardiff University has been given the highest possible grading of ‘Outstanding’ by Innovate UK.

Funded by Welsh Government, the KTP was a collaboration between St. David’s Children Society, Cardiff University School of Psychology and Cardiff Business School. Supported by the National Adoption Service Cymru the KTP purpose was to strengthen adoption services, with the Adopting Together Service growing from a need identified to find families for children who wait the longest and were most at risk of having their plans changed to long term fostering arrangements.

The KTP began in September 2017. Led by St. David’s, in partnership with Barnardo’s Cymru, Adoption UK and our therapeutic partner, The Family Place, the Adopting Together Service officially launched in June 2018. Since then the Service has continued to grow, placing over 14 children with permanent families. Under its unique model, children and their families have been offered psychologist-led and therapeutic support prior to, and within the first year of placement.

The ‘outstanding’ rating reflects the whole innovative approach undertaken by the KTP to establish the Service, inclusive of support from Cardiff Business School and School of Psychology. Through direct guidance from Dr Jane Lynch at Cardiff Business School, Adopting Together created a collaborative structure behind its delivery that represented transformational change in the procurement of social care, aligning with the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.

Led by Professor Katherine Shelton, Cardiff University School of Psychology is evaluating the impact of the service for children and their families. Dr Shelton stated that, “This multi-agency project has been transformative in its approach to supporting some of the most vulnerable children in our society. We are absolutely delighted to see recognition from Innovate UK of this work with the ‘outstanding’ grading”.

Wendy Keidan, CEO of St. David’s stated, “The KTP has acted as an enabler of collaboration using the expertise of academic, therapeutic, statutory and voluntary sector partners to find adoptive families for some of the most vulnerable children in Wales. We are grateful for the support of Welsh Government in facilitating this unique relationship which is now going from strength to strength and to Innovate UK for recognising this sector leading approach to social care.”

Suzanne Griffiths, Director of the National Adoption Service said “I am very pleased to see this recognition from Innovate UK.  It is testament to the uniquely collaborative approach that underpins this new and much needed service.”




This week (14th – 20th October) is National Adoption Week!

We are taking this week to celebrate our adopters and let you know how we can support you in your adoption journey!

Adoption Information Evening

Tuesday, 15th October
4 PM
St David’s Children Society (28 Park Place, Cardiff)

Have you been thinking about adoption but something is holding you back? Perhaps you think you’re not eligible to adopt, or you think it will be expensive? Are you unsure what an Adoption Agency actually does?

At our adoption evening we’ll answer all your questions about adoption. Come along and learn about St David’s as an organisation and how the adoption process looks, then ask us any questions of your own! If you like what you hear, you can even talk to us about how to start your adoption journey.

It’s not to be missed!

Follow along on social media!

We will be posting all week on social media, giving you information about the organisation, as well as being part of an exciting project with the National Adoption Service! Make sure you’re following us to keep up to date with us this National Adoption Week!

Twitter: @adoptionwales

Facebook: St David’s Children Society

Instagram: st.davids.children.society

LGBT+ Adoption & Fostering Week 2019

New Family Social’s LGBT+ Adoption & Fostering Week campaign returns from 4-10 March, 2019. This year’s theme is ’7 days to love’ with each day of the week focusing on different areas.

We’re thrilled that record numbers of adoption and foster care agencies are joining us and supporting the campaign this year.

Why the week’s needed

In 2018  there were 75,420 looked after children in England, an increase of four per cent from 2017. There’s an ongoing need for more people to provide foster care across the UK and for more people to consider adoption.

Despite a record proportion of same-sex couples adopting in England and Wales, LGBT+ people still report high expectations of discrimination from foster and adoption agencies. To counter this, LGBT+ Adoption & Fostering Week is a unique opportunity for agencies across the UK to come together and encourage more LGBT+ people to consider both pathways to parenting.

LGBT+ Fostering and Adoption Week is ran by New Family Social  who are the only charity led by LGBT+ adopters and foster carers.  St. David’s Children Society are proud members of New Family Social and have a strong history of assessing and placing with families who identify as LGBT+.  We will be actively supporting LGBT+ Fostering and Adoption Week.  If you would like to speak to somebody about adoption and live in Wales or Herefordshire please contact us on 02920 667 007 or email, info@stdavidscs.org

It is with very mixed feelings that I am writing this note that marks the departure of our long standing CEO of thirty years . After much deliberation, Gerry has decided to retire and go off and enjoy the fruits of his labour with his lovely wife Jo and two delightful girls Hannah and Emma not forgetting his faithful hound Dylan.

Retirement of Gerry Cooney

For those who have worked in the adoption sector Gerry’s name has been synonymous with St. David’s for many years. Indeed he started his career with the Society as a social worker in 1988 under Father O’Leary as the Director.  During those early days he worked alongside Sisters of the Catholic Church and of course our brilliant administrator Jackie who has lived the journey of the Society alongside Gerry.

Gerry’s tenure as CEO started dramatically. Faced with a failing organisation both financially and from the perspective of the Inspectorate, his tenacity, determination and vision saw it move from an organisation on the brink of closure to a highly successful Society. Today it is a proud partner of the National Adoption Service recognised for its innovation, creativity and quality of service provision.  A Senior Policy advisor said very recently to me “St. David’s is critical to adoption in Wales”
Gerry’s mission has always been the children and their right to family life. The Vision of St. David’s, “Where every child with an adoption plan is found a new family”, has been Gerry’s life work. Under his leadership 700 children have been placed with the Society – There can be no finer legacy to leave.

Gerry has achieved so much in his 30 years. He made a courageous decision to move away from the Catholic Church so that prospective adopters could become parents regardless of their sexuality. Today we have a thriving community of LGBT adopters who together with all our adoptive families belong to the St. David’s family.

A great strategist, Gerry was a lead visionary in the formation of the National Adoption Service speaking with eloquence and passion at the Cross-Party Committee of Inquiry into Adoption.  The Deputy Minister, Glenda Thomas who drove forward the principle model for NAS through legislation, consulted regularly with Gerry as a lead oracle in the field.

As I step into some very big shoes as the new CEO, I will endeavour to hold safe the team and all the families who we serve as Gerry has always done.

The adoption world in Wales is losing one of its greats.  On behalf of the team, Trustees, Panel and all our families we thank you and wish you a long happy and healthy retirement. You have served St. David’s impeccably and many, many children’s lives are all the richer because of you.

Wendy Keidan

It is that time of year again! Here is our Autumn Newsletter for 2018.  Click on the below link to keep up to date with all that has been going on at St. David’s Children Society.  We cover retirements, new starters, AFA Cymru, Adopting Together and even a staff member going to the Bowling World Championships in Las Vegas!

Final Newsletter 2018

St. David’s Children Society and AFA Cymru are pleased to currently have a number of vacancies available on our website.  Please take a look at the jobs section of our website for further details:


Currently we are looking to fill the following positions:

Deputy Director

Administrator – St. David’s

Senior Regional Administrator – AFA Cymru

Independent Social Workers

The met office has released a red alert relating to adverse weather conditions in South Wales. We have made the decision to close the office with immediate effect. The office will close today and tomorrow: Thursday 1st March and Friday 2nd March, reopening on Monday 5th March. The duty desk remains open.

The Support Group scheduled for the morning of Saturday 3rd March has been cancelled.

Thank you.

St. David’s

Senior Social Work Practitioner. Adoption.  Salary: £33,437 – £35,444. (SP38-40).

Full time permanent post (37 hrs/wk). Cardiff.


Based within the social work team at St. David’s, an exciting opportunity has arisen for an experienced Social work Practitioner. The post holder will have a mixed caseload covering all aspects of the adoption role, including assessment activity and adoption support for families and children.


Supportive working environment with a strong emphasis on individual & team development.

10% pension contribution + comprehensive BUPA cover. Generous leave entitlement.

St David’s is committed to achieving equal opportunities.


Applicants must have a minimum of 2 years adoption experience or 3 years in a child & family setting. A recognised social work qualification applies.


Closing date for applications is Monday 29th  January.   Interviews week commencing 12th February.


Job Description

Person Specification

Application Form


For additional information visit our website or contact: Helen, Anna or Mel.

28 Park Place, Cardiff CF10 3BA.

Tel No: 029 2066 7007  Email: info@stdavidscs.org   Website: www.adoptionwales.org

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