And after the adoption?”: Needs and Interventions as seen by families and professionals.

This Symposium focuses on post-adoption and aims to accrue knowledge in the field, bridging the domains of clinical psychology and the child protection.

The challenges to being an adoptive family are multiple, and everyone involved in the process knows the risk of the family’ rupture after the child goes to live with the new family. The work of the professionals during the pos-adoption is very complex once it acts on different levels, giving support to the family and simultaneously assessing the well-being of the child, the adequacy of parents’ practices, and the quality of ties. The Symposium will include two empirical studies centered in the needs of the post-adoption life. The first study lays out the professionals’ perspective about the families’ needs and their experiences with the intervention during this period. The second one describes the adoption parent’s perspective about the post-adoption, to identify parenting strengths, weaknesses, and needs. These studies will provide important clues to improve post-adoption services, which in Portugal, despite being previewed in the law, the practices lack systematized and well-developed programs. The third communication introduces a new intervention approach, consisting in a Mindful Parenting Model for Portuguese adoptive parents. The symposium closes by putting forward some practices usually implemented within the first months of the child arriving at the new family and illustrating specific intervention strategies in this period, namely with a LGBT+ adoption families. A collaborative approach between professionals and families will also contribute to the openness of communication in the system and the coherence of the adoptee’s narrative identity, related to the child’s well-being.


University of Porto. Portugal
Margarida Rangel Henriques is a PhD Psychologist, Associate Professor, Researcher and Psychotherapist in the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences of the University of Porto. She teaches at the bachelor, master, and doctoral levels in the domains of children and adolescence clinical psychology and qualitative research methodologies. She is expert in clinical child psychology and has specialization in cognitive-behavioural therapy, systemic family therapy and Narrative Therapy. She is the head of the unit of child and adolescents’ clinical intervention in the Clinical Service of the Faculty and there she founded an Adoption and Foster-Care Children Service in the Faculty. She had created and coordinates the Psi.ON a website platform for brief clinical intervention in University of Porto. She is co-author of a Narrative Therapeutic Manual for Anxiety Disorders including an activity book to the childShe also has developed intervention programs for Adoption Candidates Training and a Program for Prepare Children for Adoption (PPCA)The main interesting research areas are life narratives and the intervention with children, young and families in the context of promotion and protection of children care system, and the suicidology and mental health. She is member of the Portuguese ProChild CoLAB, Against Poverty and Social Exclusion, where she co-coordinates the studies in the field of adoption. She has a long experience in the training and supervision of professionals in the field of clinical intervention and of child promotion and protection. She is a member of the executive board of the European Society of Family Relations (ESFR), member of Portuguese Association os Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy, and effective member of Portuguese Family Therapy Society, and Member of the Narrative Therapy Spanish Association (AETEN).