Could you adopt and change a child’s life?
This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.
Adopters Russell and Matthew had always dreamed of creating a forever family for a child who’d had a difficult start in life.
It was something they had wanted to do for many years but as a same-sex couple they were unsure it would ever happen.
The couple are now adoptive parents to not one, but two young children and describe family life as “a dream come true.”
They would like to see more people coming forward to offer permanent homes for children unable to live with their birth families.
Interested adopters can find out more about the process and the children who need adoptive families during National Adoption Week which starts next week. We are holding an afternoon tea event on Wednesday 21 October and everyone is welcome to attend at our Badminton Road office in Yate between 4.30pm and 6.30pm.
There are toddlers, sibling groups and older children who need to be adopted. Some of these children also have disabilities and/or learning difficulties.
Adopter Russell said: “We’d always said that we wanted a family but we figured it would never happen. Then the rules changed and everything became possible. The opportunity that we could get to look after children and create a family was just wonderful. We both come from quite big families and felt we could offer so much as adopters.”
Russell and Matthew, who have been together for 10 years, applied to be adopters in 2010 and later adopted two young children.
Russell said: “It went so well, we didn’t just do it once, but did it twice!”
The couple can still remember taking the first step towards the legal process of adoption at a council information event.
He said they found it “very useful” to talk to social workers and to meet adopters who had been through the process.
Russell added: “Overall the adoption process was surprisingly speedy. We actually really enjoyed it.
“We had a very organised and efficient social worker who put a lot of hard work into explaining everything to us.”
The couple have reduced their working hours and share childcare responsibilities at their home on the South Gloucestershire border.
Russell said: “It’s a huge sacrifice and interested people need to think about adoption very carefully.
“People have to understand these children can be traumatised as they may have suffered emotional loss but there are lots of children needing homes and adoption is very rewarding. We wouldn’t have it any other way, we’ve got no regrets at all. It’s all going really well for us, we’re loving it.”
The theme for National Adoption Week, which runs from 19 to 25 October, is ‘Too old at 4?’ as there is a shortage of adopters for older children, who are often in sibling groups or have additional needs.
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