September 16, 2020
A coalition of National, Regional and Voluntary adoption agencies across the country, supported by the Department for Education (DfE), have joined forces to launch a nationwide recruitment campaign to raise awareness of adoption. SFCS will proudly support this campaign over the coming months.
In the UK, there are almost 3,000 children that are in need of an adoptive family and the number of adoptions in England has fallen by a third in four years. In response, the new #YouCanAdopt campaign will bust myths around who is eligible to adopt and explore what the adoption process involves as well as highlight that especially during the COVID pandemic, there are still children out there who are looking for their new family.
Earlier this year, a new report revealed that 45% of adults in the UK have considered adoption or would consider adoption in future. But, despite this, 62% of adults feel they don’t know much about the adoption process and this lack of knowledge may contribute to many people not taking the important first step.
With 40% of people admitting they don’t know if they’re eligible to adopt and 29% thinking they wouldn’t be able to, the new campaign aims to increase the number of people taking the first steps towards adopting a child.
The #YouCanAdopt campaign also aims to reach potential parents from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds, as these children traditionally wait longer to be matched with a new adoptive family. The campaign aims to encourage potential adoptive parents to also consider adopting older children, sibling groups and those with complex health needs or a disability.
To help shine a light on the diverse range of families who have and can adopt, a new film has been released featuring singer Sinitta and TV vocal coaches Carrie and David Grant alongside other families who are joining in encouraging others to consider adoption. A podcast series has also been released, featuring interviews with adoptive families about the adoption process and the journey they took to adopt their children.
Sarah Johal, member of the National Adoption Recruitment Steering Group and Head of One Adoption West Yorkshire, said: “The future of many children depends on adults exploring adoption and taking the first step towards becoming an adoptive parent. We need to address misunderstandings and outdated views to ensure that nobody is discouraged from taking the first important step towards adopting a child.”
“Some people assume that because of their age or marital status they won’t be able to adopt, but that is simply not true, adoption is a choice for people who want to become a parent. There is a very wide range of people who have the motivation, commitment and love to be a great parent and there are many children all over the country who are waiting for an adoptive family to improve their lives for the better. Some people may be worried about adopting in the current climate, but there are children waiting to be adopted, and systems and support in place to ensure that assessments and preparation can be conducted safely.”
Sinitta, singer and mum of two, said: “I would definitely encourage others to consider adoption. I always knew I wanted children and I tried everything from IVF to surrogacy to have them. All of those journeys led to heartbreak, except adoption. The feeling of finally becoming a mother was almost indescribable; it’s just everything. It was everything I wanted and more. I love my children more than anything and I always say that love is thicker than blood.”
If you can provide a safe, stable, loving home for a child/children who need it, the chances are #YouCanAdopt. Visit our Mythbusting page to find out if you are ruling yourself out unnecessarily, and visit our I’d Like To Adopt page to learn more and begin your journey towards growing your family.
Statistics in this article come from three sources:
1. Opinium survey of 2,006 adults (aged 21-60) between 10th – 15th January
2. Department of Education. Children looked after in England including adoption: 2018 to 2019 (Dec 2019) https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2018-to-2019
3. Adoption and Special Guardianship Leadership Board Headline measures and Business intelligence. (Dec 2019) https://coram-i.org.uk/resource/local-level-data-quarter-4-2018-2019/