The children who wait the longest for a family are aged between three and ten. Of the 93 children Essex placed last year for adoption, 25% were over the age of five, which is above the national average, but more families are needed.
There are many misconceptions around about who can adopt, such as you have to be married, belong to a faith group, own your own house, be under 40, have a job etc. The only criteria is that you must be over 21, be in reasonably good health, be able to provide a stable and loving home and have the time and commitment to give to a child or children. The adoption service encourages potential adopters to remain open-minded about the kinds of children who could join their family.
Essex County Councillor Sarah Candy, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Children’s Services, said: “Our preference will always be to provide families with the support they need to care for and protect their children. However, there are a small number of cases when, due to abuse or neglect, it is in the interests of the child to remove them from their parents.
“The fear and pain these children experience is something that most of us can only imagine and at this time they desperately need the love, safety and stability that only a family can give.
“Being an adoptive parent is one of the most important but also rewarding responsibilities an individual can accept. They give vulnerable children the opportunities they deserve to be all that they can be. I hope that this week inspires many more adults to seriously consider giving a vulnerable Essex child the love and protection they need.”
The Adoption Service holds monthly information meetings for people wanting to know more about adopting in Essex. People wanting more information about adopting in Essex should contact 0800 801530 or visit our adoption page