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National early years adoption therapy service

A new national service offering specialist psychological support to families with adoptive children under five.


At Anna Freud, we work with families to identify needs and difficulties as early as possible, so that we can provide timely support, and help to promote positive outcomes for children in later life.

Children who are adopted or cared for by Special Guardians start life with disruptions in their early relationships which are likely to be experienced as traumatic. These experiences can impact children’s future relationships, as well as their emotional, social, and cognitive development. Research shows that early therapeutic input can support both children and parents and contribute to building robust foundations for children’s later development, wellbeing, and health.

NEYATS overview leaflet 

Who we help

Our National Early Years Adoption Therapy Service supports children, parents, and Special Guardians, where:

  • The child is aged 5 or younger;

  • The family is eligible for the Adoption Support Fund (ASF);

  • All those with Parental Responsibility are aware of and agree to the referral

How we help

All our interventions aim to strengthen relationships between parents and children, and support parents to reflect on and develop their understanding of their child’s needs. We offer a range of evidence-based, trauma- and attachment-informed assessment and therapeutic services, including:

  • Specialist child and family assessment, including therapeutic support plan

In our comprehensive child and family assessments, we collaborate with families and the wider professional network to develop an in-depth understanding of needs and difficulties, and if appropriate, make recommendations for therapeutic support. This includes:

  • Parenting support groups

  • Bespoke individualised parent consultations

  • Parent-child or family psychotherapy

How much does it cost?

Assessment and therapy can be funded via the Adoption Support Fund (ASF). Once a referral is accepted, a costing will be provided to enable the child’s Local Authority Social Worker to apply for ASF funding. Sessions begin once funding has been agreed.

Meet the team

Our Early Years team specialises in working with children aged five and under, and their families. Our therapists have substantial experience working with adopted and looked after children, children with attachment needs, and families affected by developmental trauma.

The following Early Years team members work as part of the National Early Years Adoption Therapy Service:

  • Eva Crasnow - Senior Therapist and Trainer

  • Gema Hadridge - Therapist and Trainer

  • Lisa Shaverin - Senior Therapist and Mentalization-Based Therapy (MBT) Lead

  • Lydia Barge - Evaluation Officer

  • Sarah Peter - Senior Therapist and Trainer

  • Sarah Stockley - Adoptive Parent Group Facilitator

For more information on our team please see this page.

Contact us

To make a referral please click here, or email with any queries.


NEYATS overview leaflet

Reflective parenting support groups


The evaluation of the Parent-Toddler Group Adoption Project is ongoing.

Read the feasibility study and report on online adaptation.