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In the UK, 61% of children waiting to be adopted are in sibling groups of two or more, and need to be adopted with their brothers or sisters. On average, siblings wait 103 days longer in care before being adopted than single children do.
SFCS is committed to finding families for the children who wait longest in care, and reducing the wait for siblings who need adoption.
The majority of people adopting for the first time will want to take a single child into their family – after all, it’s ‘usual’ for children to enter a family one by one. Perhaps you have thought about adopting siblings, but decided that it would be too difficult or overwhelming.
At SFCS, we ask anyone who is considering adoption to think about whether they could parent siblings. There’s no denying that having more than one child comes with real challenges, and will require commitment and energy. But it also has advantages and brings great rewards.
If you think you would ultimately like to have more than one child in your family, adopting a sibling group means you will only have to go through the training and approval process once.
It will also remove the added challenge of placing a second child with your family; if you adopt for a second time, the matching process could be more complicated as the needs of the child and any previously-placed children will all need to be taken into account to ensure a good match. If you adopt siblings, it will already be established that the children have a good relationship with each other.
Sibling groups are often older than single children, which means that much more is likely to be known about any health issues or other difficulties the children may face as they grow up. This can help adopters to be more prepared and to access appropriate support for their children straight away.
It is often in the best interests of children in sibling groups that they find a family together, rather than experience further trauma by being separated from their brothers and sisters.
In families where children have suffered abuse or neglect, the sibling bond can be particularly strong. By adopting a sibling group, you are enabling these children to hold onto the person / people who have been there with them throughout their difficult start in life.
Siblings will have a shared past that only they can understand and appreciate. This often means they will be able to offer each other special support and emotional security through their ups and downs. And they will always have someone in their lives who understands exactly what it’s like to have been through what they’ve been through.
It takes a special kind of person to adopt more than one child at a time. If you’d like to talk further about adopting a sibling group of two or more children, please get in touch. We’ll be delighted to talk to you and answer your questions.
If you are considering adoption, you can find out more about our Adoption Connections service here. You can also check out our adoption resources, find out about our next information events and read real adoption stories from many people who have adopted siblings with our help.