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Suffolk's adoption plea

PUBLISHED: 12:22 16 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:30 05 July 2010

A TOTAL of 25 children are having to stay in foster care in Suffolk because there aren't enough people coming forward to adopt them.

These are children who very much want to be adopted, to have a chance at a normal family life, and who are agreed by experts to be likely to respond well to being adopted.

A TOTAL of 25 children are having to stay in foster care in Suffolk because there aren't enough people coming forward to adopt them.

These are children who very much want to be adopted, to have a chance at a normal family life, and who are agreed by experts to be likely to respond well to being adopted.

And Suffolk County Council is appealing for anyone who might consider adopting a young person to contact them to discuss it.

One advantage adopters have in Suffolk is that they get great support from the council's adoption service.

Anyone who would like to consider adopting a local child can contact the council in confidence.

Those who decide to go ahead are given advice and support, right through the process. Indeed the recent national inspection of the council's service said that the support to adoptive families, even once the child has been adopted, is outstanding.

Suffolk County councillor Patricia O'Brien, portfolio holder for children, schools and young people's services, said: "There is nothing more important that any of us can do than give one of these children the chance of a proper family life. You don't have to be a married couple with a large house: good adoptive families come in all shapes and sizes.

“Our staff really are excellent and will be with you every step of the way, so please do think hard about whether you would like to get in touch to talk the idea through. There is lots of information and ideas on our website, have a look at www.suffolkadoption.com and then please get in touch with us on 0800 389 9417."

Last year Suffolk County Council's adoption agency found adopters for 71 children, but there are always children waiting. Many of these children have additional needs and some have emotional and behavioural difficulties which may continue throughout childhood. This means that there are some adoptive families who need extra help from the adoption service. Knowing that excellent support is there as needed might encourage some people to think seriously about getting in touch.

Children waiting longest include sibling groups (brothers or sisters to be adopted together), children with additional needs including those with physical disabilities, older children and children of black and ethnic minority origin.

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