National Adoption Week – can you give a child a home?

BEING part of a loving family is what most children taken for granted. However, there are still children in Carmarthenshire who are looking for a home of their own.

As part of National Adoption Week, people are being asked to open their homes and their hearts to those waiting for a family.

In Carmarthenshire, there are about 10 families who are waiting for a child to be placed with them.

However, most wish to have a child as young as possible, and the greatest need is for sibling groups who need families to keep them together.

They are across a range of ages and may have additional needs or behavioural issues.

In the past year, 25 children in Carmarthenshire were adopted, and 28 sets of applicants were approved.

Mid and West Wales Adoption Service Manager Norry Hutchison said: “The number of children needing adoptive families does fluctuate.

Over the last year or so there have been fewer children with a plan for adoption at the same time as higher numbers of people have come forward and been approved to adopt.

This has resulted in some people waiting much longer than usual to be matched with a child.

Adoption agencies have to manage the number of new potential adopters they assess, at the same time as supporting adopters already waiting for a match.

However, most agencies continue to welcome adopters for specific groups of children. These include: those over three or four years of age, children in sibling groups, children with disabilities and additional needs and children from black and minority ethnic backgrounds.

National Adoption Week, from November 18-25, aims to encompass all aspects of adoption, to demystify and clarify the adoption process, reflect the challenges of adoptive parenting, share individual stories, showcase and signpost to best practice and invite anyone whose life or heart is touched by it to share their experiences.

Carmarthenshire is one of four local authorities in Adoption Mid and West Wales; the others are Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion and Powys.

Children’s Services executive board member Cllr Gareth Jones said: “We want to make sure that children grow up as part of a permanent, loving family from childhood through to adulthood.

“It doesn’t matter whether you already have children, whether you’re single or a couple, whether you’re married, unmarried or in a civil partnership.

“If you can give a child a loving, stable home please consider adoption.”

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