The urgent need to find adoptive families for children who need them is being highlighted during National Adoption Week, which begins today (Monday 14 October, 2019).
As part of the annual campaign, Adoption@Heart, the Regional Adoption Agency for the Black Country, is keen to raise awareness of adoption and find homes for children currently waiting to be adopted.
Latest figures from the government show that the West Midlands has three times as many children awaiting adoptive families as there are adopters. The region currently has 610 children waiting to be adopted and 210 families approved to adopt.
The latest statistics also reveal that, of the children awaiting adoption, 27% are aged five or over, 5% have a disability, 30% are from Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic backgrounds and 51% are in sibling groups.
Rt Hon Jacqui Smith, Chair of Sandwell Children’s Trust said:
"If you’ve thought about changing a child’s life through adoption, please don’t get put off by what you think a typical adopter looks like. Get in touch for more information.
"It could be the first step to an enormously rewarding adventure."
Mark Tobin, Adoption@Heart Service Head, said:
“This highlights the long term need to find adoptive families for children who need them.
“We are appealing for adopters who can give our children lots of individual time, understanding and on-going support. We are looking to recruit adopters from within a diverse section of the community, irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, disability, race or faith.
“Being an adoptive parent can be challenging but it also brings great rewards. If you’re interested in finding out more, please contact Adoption@Heart today.”
Anyone can adopt, whether they are single, living together, married, a same sex couple, in employment or not working, or already have children or not. Potential adopters must legally be a UK resident and have been so for at least 12 months, as well as being aged 21 or over. They should have a spare bedroom and be able to provide a stable home for a child until adulthood and beyond.
Information events are held every two weeks across the region and are the perfect opportunity for prospective adopters to find out more and have your questions answered.
National Adoption Week runs from 14-20 October 2019 – to find out more, please visit www.first4adoption.org.uk/nationaladoptionweek.