Sunderland, Thursday 3rd February 2022: We are delighted to share that ARC Adoption director and founder, Terry Fitzpatrick, was this week awarded an OBE at a ceremony at Windsor Castle, to formally recognise his contribution to children’s social work in the North East of England.
On receiving the award, Terry had this message to share:
“It was a real privilege and honour to be awarded the OBE by The Princess Royal, Princess Anne at Windsor Castle. Whilst I appreciate that it is given as a personal recognition for working over 40 years in children’s social care, this would not have been achieved without the opportunities I have had to work with phenomenally dedicated colleagues and so many wonderful adoptive families. A sincere thank you to you all.”
Terry was notified about the award in the New Year’s Honours list at the end of 2020, and his citation read:
“He has worked tirelessly to establish partnerships between voluntary adoption services and the statutory sector, helping to build collaboration and trust across the region to enhance and develop services for children and families.
“During the Covid-19 outbreak he spearheaded ARC BOX, a digital platform to support children and young people with life story work, providing a secure space for them to explore their history and share, on their terms, with those important to them – including birth family members.
“The crisis raises issues of identity and separation and loss, for children away from their birth families and who have experienced a number of transitions in their lives. The crisis is preventing children’s social workers from providing direct face to face work with the children they have responsibility for and ARC BOX gives them a platform for engaging safely with the child and in turn gives the child the opportunity, through its diary and posting facilities, to express any fears or anxieties they might have using a secure private medium rather than using the more public social media platforms used by the wider public.”
Before founding independent, not for profit agency, ARC Adoption North East in 2013, Terry managed family placement services for the council and specifically managed the adoption service for over 24 years. During that time it gained a reputation for being one of the leading lights for adoption and fostering in the UK, and was regularly recognised with outstanding results in various inspections carried out by government agencies.
All of the ARC Adoption team are extremely proud of Terry, and are delighted that he has received this recognition for all he has done, and continues to do, for children and families in the North East.