Researchers at the University of Essex and the University of Kent are hoping to find natural mothers interested in taking part in a paid study exploring ways to process the loss and other associated emotions when a child is taken without parental consent.

Dr Samantha Davey and Dr Stella Bolaki have shared more information about the project, which we’re adding below:

“We are looking for birth mothers [you can explain why you prefer the term ‘natural mothers’ if you contact them] whose children have been adopted to take part in a paid research study located at the University of Kent. This is part of a joint initiative between Dr Samantha Davey (University of Essex) and Dr Stella Bolaki (University of Kent).  

The study has three main parts: two short telephone interviews and attendance of an art book workshop, looking at ways of reflecting and exploring grief and other emotions related to the adoption process. There is the potential for involvement in video recordings and blogging but there is no requirement to take part in this aspect of the study.

Participants will be paid for their time, travel expenses and cost of child care. If you or someone you know might be interested in taking part, please e-mail Dr Davey at”

If you are interested but would like to ask questions before engaging, you can also get in touch with Dr Davey.

We imagine a great many of you will feel wrongful removal is a key element which should not be ignored in this kind of research. You can tell the researchers why unjust removals or forced removals create obstacles to any benefits this kind of healing process is trying to offer. It is important for them to understand.

We have attached the full proposal in the gallery below.

Thanks to Paul Brian Tovey who alerted us to this research.