National Adoption Week

Would-be parents across East Ayrshire are being urged to give a loving home to dozens of children as part of National Adoption Week.

East Ayrshire Council’s adoption team is encouraging people to think in particular about adopting siblings. Right now there are several brothers and sisters young enough to be adopted. They need special families who can keep them together with their siblings and take them into their family for a lifelong commitment.

Many potential adopters hope to adopt one child, and often as young a child as possible. Although such preferences are understandable, the adoption team is hoping to encourage potential adopters to think about the benefits to children of growing up with their brother or sister, particularly if they are adopted.

There are many misconceptions about adoption, with some people believing that they might not be ‘the right kind of family’ to be considered as adopters. But recent years have seen an increase in single people adopting, as well as same sex and unmarried couples. As an adoption agency, East Ayrshire’s adoption service is keen to encourage adopters from a wide range of backgrounds and we have assessed and approved same sex adopters and been successful in finding matches for them with suitable children.

The Council is also keen to encourage applicants from a wide range of social backgrounds, and it’s important that all areas of our community know that adoption is not restricted to people who own their own homes, or who have a certain level of income.

Adopters can have a range of motivation, from infertility, which can affect anyone regardless of background, to people who have already parented successfully and who want to extend their family. Another misconception can involve potential adopters thinking that if they already have a child or children that they will be a lower priority, or somehow ‘less deserving’ than childless applicants. This is not true however, and previous parenting experience is something that can be viewed as a real strength in an application.

Children’s Champion Depute Provost Claire Leitch said: “My advice to anyone thinking about adoption would be to just make the call – it doesn’t actually commit you to anything but knowing what is involved and having the opportunity to talk to others helps make it more real in your own mind and could be the best thing you ever do.

“We are particularly looking for adoptive families for sibling groups as we know that in most cases, keeping brothers and sisters together is in their best interests rather than the experience of further stress caused by being separated from each other.

“Adopting a child can so often be hugely rewarding, but we don’t underestimate the challenge of adopting and have nothing but admiration for anyone who chooses to give that huge commitment to offer a child a loving and stable home for life.”

If you think you have something to offer a child or children, please get in touch with one of the dedicated team of social workers to find out more about adoption or permanent fostering. Call 0800 434 6633, text ‘info’ to 80039 or email fosteringandadoption@east-ayrshire.gov.uk for more information.