New adoptive families are being sought for children across Lancashire
Forever families are being urgently sought for siblings and children with additional needs – could you be the new parent they are looking for?
Children like little Charlie and Ruby* are desperately seeking new families, and now Lancashire County Council’s adoption team has launched a recruitment campaign to find them and children like them new parents.
Charlie is a bright and cheeky, mischievous three-year-old. Along with his four-month-old little sister Ruby, they are looking for a loving, family home. Due to neglect and concerns around the birth parents, they have both been in foster care since birth and are looking for a family that will show them the love and warmth that all children dream of.
There are lots of reasons why people may be hesitant about inquiring, but there are many more good reasons why they should.
Jackie McIntyre Team Manager with Adoption Lancashire and Blackpool says many people could fit the adoption criteria. Same sex couples, single people, mixed ethnicity families, people with troubled backgrounds – all will be considered for potential matching.
She said: “It takes approximately six months from inquiring to approval as an adoptive parent, then the matching process takes however long it takes.
“But if you are looking for a sibling set, or a child with additional needs, you could find yourself matched within weeks.”
Older children, sibling sets and those with additional learning or physical needs often say in the care system for longer, staying with foster parents, or eventually being moved on to life-long fostering.
Jackie said: “Many people approach adoption looking for a baby. There are not many babies ready for adoption, and that means the wait for adoptive parents can be a long one. But those willing to adopt sibling sets or children with additional needs can find themselves with a ready-made family very quickly.”
The criteria for adoptive parents is very short – simply being over 21 is the biggest hurdle. Then it doesn’t matter if you own or rent, are employed or unemployed, have older children or none or have parenting experience … your lived experience is often a very positive factor.
Jackie added: “People sometimes think that they will be ruled out because of a previous addiction, or a criminal history. Obviously, there will be some exceptions, but people who have faced adversity themselves often have the most empathy when it comes to adoption, both for the child and their birth parents.”
In many cases adoptions are closed, but in recent years limited contact with birth parents, where in the child’s best interest, can continue after adoption, supported and helped by the adoption team.
Want to know more? There’s information online here you can also register your interest, and the team will be in touch.
*Names and photos have been changed