Adoption & Fostering Support in Northern Ireland

Two girls smiling at Camera

There are many different agencies available to support adoption and fostering in Northern Ireland.

HSC NI Adoption & Foster Care Service

HSC NI Adoption & Foster Care Service is the largest recruitment and training service in Northern Ireland for adoption and foster care. It is made up of a Central Service in Belfast and the local adoption and fostering team in each of the five HSC Trust areas (in Belfast, Northern, South Eastern, Southern and Western areas). Our role is to recruit, support and provide learning and development opportunities for both foster carers and adoptive families. We work in partnership with statutory and independent organisations to provide a service to children and young people, their birth families, foster carers and adoptive families. Contact HSC NI Adoption & Foster Care Central Service: Nore Villa, Knockbracken Healthcare Park Saintfield Road, Belfast, BT8 8BH Tel: 0800 0720 137 / (028) 9504 0557 (free from landlines. Mobile charges may vary)

Call 0800 0720 137   Visit

Fostering Network NI

Fostering Network NI Health and Social Care (HSC) Trusts pay for their foster carers to become members of the Fostering Network who provide advice support and information through independent support to foster carers. The Health and Social Care Board also fund the Improving and Fostering Educational Attainment and Achievement Service delivered by the Fostering Network to promote the educational achievement of children in foster care.

Kinship Care NI

Kinship Care NI help and support kinship carers and their children in Northern Ireland. 

Voice of Young People in Care (VOYPIC)

VOYPIC is a charity working across Northern Ireland promoting the rights and improving the lives of children and young people cared for away from home. The Health and Social Care Board provide funding to enable VOYPIC to advocate for children cared for away from home and to encourage their participation in a range of diverse activities.


The Health and Social Care Board provide funding to enable EXTERN to provide a mentoring service for children cared for away from home.


Adoption UK Helpline 028 9077 5211 available Mon-Fri 9-5pm

Adoption UK is a national self-help charity providing information, support, encouragement and training to prospective adopters, adoptive parents, long-term foster carers and all those involved with them.

Kinship Care Helpline 0800 022 3129 available Mon-Fri 9.30am -5pm.

The Caring for Kin Helpline provides free, independent and confidential advice and support to kinship carers throughout Northern Ireland

 Adopted Adults Tracing & Contacting Birth Relatives

Trusts also provide Post Adoption Support Services for adoption children.  This includes specialist Therapeutic Intervention via their Looked After and Adopted Children Therapeutic Teams.

Adopted Adults over 18 years old can access their birth records and you can add your details to the Contact register.

If you were adopted in Northern Ireland, your local Health and Social Care Trust (HSC) or registered Adoption Agency can provide a Counselling Service to support you make connections with your birth family, through providing an intermediary service.

Contact details for local HSC Trusts are:

Belfast Trust

Karen Simpson

028 9504 0350

Northern Trust

Caroline Turley

Claire Boyd

028 9331 5111

028 2563 5110

South Eastern Trust

Karen Leonard

028 9127 0672

Southern Trust

Joan McGuinness

Tara Murphy

028 3756 6125

Western Trust

Roisin Lynch

Anita McBirney

028 7131 4235

028 8285 5114

You can also contact the Regional Adoption and Fostering Service on 0800 0720 137. Registered Adoption Agencies:

Family Care Society


Derry / Londonderry

028 9069 1133

028 7136 8592

Adoption Routes


028 9073 6080

Tracing & Contacting Birth Relatives and Adopted Adults (NI Direct) provides advice for People in Northern Ireland trying to Trace and Contact Birth Relatives and Adopted Adults

Related Documents

Health and Social Care Trust Areas

Last Updated: 16/09/2022