Could you offer a child a loving home? Why not adopt?
Over the last 18 months, 35 children have been adopted in Gloucestershire, but some children are still left waiting for homes.
Gloucestershire County Council is again appealing for people in the county from all walks of life willing to adopt children of all ages, particularly children over the age of three and groups of brothers and sisters.
Their call coincides with the launch of National Adoption Week (31st October – 6th November) – a nationwide campaign organised by the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF). The campaign aims to help find families for up to 4,000 children throughout the UK waiting for loving and permanent homes.
The number of children aged over 3 years, sibling groups and disabled children needing adoption has continued to grow. Many of these children may have been abused or neglected and are now living in foster homes.
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Vicky, 40, and David, 39, from the south Cotswolds, have adopted five children since 2003. Vicky and David had always wanted to adopt children.
Vicky said: "We wanted a family and adoption just felt like the right option for us. So, when we were in our early 30s, we adopted a sibling group of three, who were all five and under."
In 2006, they adopted a one-year-old, and, earlier this year, they adopted a three-year-old.
Vicky said: "Adoption has been the best, and hardest, thing that we have ever done. Our children bring us untold rewards. They amaze us every day with their love, resilience and unique perspective on life."
There is no upper age limit to adopt and Gloucestershire County Council is keen to hear from married and unmarried couples, single people, lesbian and gay couples and individuals, those who have their own children, homeowners or those renting a property.
Cllr Paul McLain, Cabinet Member for Children & Young People, said: "We currently have 27 children who we are looking to find permanent homes for. We are busy assessing 14 sets of adoptive parents.
"Our aim for all children is to give them the best possible life chances, which means offering the opportunity to adopt to the widest possible range of people. More than nine out of 10 people who go through the assessment process are approved to adopt and we need people from across the community to come forward. We particularly need families who would welcome older children and brothers and sisters. We have also made great strides in improving the adoption process as well as our adoption support services in Gloucestershire and we hope this will encourage people to contact us to offer a loving and permanent home to a child or children. So if you are interested in adoption please pick up the phone and find out more."
Anyone wishing to find out more about adoption can contact Gloucestershire County Council's Adoption Team on 01242 532597 or pop along to one of the information stands.
Gloucestershire County Council will be holding adoption information stands at:
- Sainsbury's, Gloucester Quays on Friday 4th November, 10am to 4pm
- Famers Market, Stroud on Saturday 5th November, 8am to 2pm
There were 35 adoptions through Gloucestershire County Council between April 2010 and September 2011.
National Adoption Week is running from 31st October – 6th November 2011. For more information about National Adoption Week please call BAAF on 020 7421 2600 or visit www.nationaladoptionweek.org.uk