A campaign to find more adopters for siblings has been launched this week after research revealed 59% of the children in the South East waiting for adoptive families are brothers and sisters in groups of two or more.
According to new information published to mark National Adoption Week (16-22nd October) figures from national adoption information service, First4Adoption, based on the latest government information*, show that sibling groups wait longer than single children to be placed with a “forever family”.
Diagrama's adoption service focuses on finding homes for children who are deemed harder to place - this includes siblings alongside children with Black and minority ethnic heritage as well as children aged over four.
Diagrama Adoption is now supporting the campaign by encouraging its own adopters to share their experiences and encourage new adopters to come forward. Diagrama Adoption Manager Gunter Becht said: “The majority of people adopting for the first time choose to take a single child into their family. Also, it is often in the best interests of the children that a sibling group finds a family together rather than experience further trauma by being separated. This presents an extra challenge for social workers and these factors account for the high proportion of siblings in our region waiting for an adoptive family”.
The new research, by Adoption Match and based on data from the Adoption Register for England also reveals that:
- 52% of sibling groups awaiting adoption in the South East are children aged over 4
- 57% of these groups awaiting adoption are made up of boys
- 18% of the siblings groups awaiting adoption are Black and Minority Ethnic children
Mr Becht, from Diagrama's Croydon-based agency added: “We’re asking anyone who may be considering adoption to think about whether they could parent siblings. There’s no denying that having more than one child comes with real challenges but it also has advantages and brings great rewards. If you’re interested in finding out more, please contact Diagrama Adoption today by calling 0800 802 1910, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit diagramaadoption.org.uk
Bromley entrepreneur Sue D’Eye adopted two children five years ago with her husband Dean after a long fertility battle. She said: “We knew that we wanted two children from the outset. When we decided to adopt we were ideally hoping for an older boy and a younger girl. I’d grown up with an older brother myself and I had it firmly in my mind that I wanted to replicate that.
“Adopting more than one child has not been without its challenges but if you are thinking of adopting one child now and another one later, I would say go for siblings together. You’ll only go through the process once and the challenges you’ll have with one child you’ll have with two or three. Plus you cannot put a value on keeping siblings together.”
Diagrama Adoption has a series of free information events for people to find out more about adoption. They include:
• 17 October, 7.30pm at St Mark's Church, 1 Canterbury Street, Gillingham, ME7 5TP
• 19 October, 7.30pm at St Peter’s Upper Church, Hastings Road, Pembury, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN2 4PD
• 23 October, 7.30pm at All Saints Church, 4 Parsonage Lane, Frindsbury, Rochester, ME2 4UR
• 25 October, 6.30pm Airport House, Purley Way, Croydon CR0 0XZ
• 8 November, 7.30pm at Christ Church Milton-Next-Gravesend, 10 Park Ave, Gravesend DA12 1NS
• 14 November, 7.30pm at Christ Church Chislehurst, 40 Lubbock Road, BR7 5JJ
• 22 November, 7.30pm at St Nicholas Church, Sevenoaks, TN13 1JA
• 23 November, 7.30pm at St Peter’s Church, College Road, Hextable, Kent, BR8 7RH
• 13 December, 6.30pm at Airport House, Purley Way, Croydon CR0 0XZ