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What is adoption?

Adoption is a way of providing a permanent new family for children who cannot be brought up by their own parents. It is a legal process, in which all the parental responsibility is transferred from the child's birth parents to the adoptive parent or parents. The adopted child becomes a full member of their new family, usually taking their new family's name. Once an adoption order has been granted it can't be reversed except in extremely rare circumstances.

Children needing adoption

Not every child who cannot live with their birth parents is seeking a permanent adoptive family. There are, however, currently around 4,000 children in the UK who are waiting for permanent new families. These children come from a wide variety of ethnic and religious backgrounds. Many of them are of school age and over half of them are in groups of brothers and sisters who need to be placed together.

Although it’s never easy to find the right family for a child, there are some groups of especially vulnerable children with special needs who have fewer chances of finding a permanent home. It is these children that Parents for Children specialises in helping.

What does adopting a child really mean?

This is a pciture of a little boy with a big wide smile.Adopting a child is making a permanent commitment to take care of that child. Every child who is adopted needs special care and understanding, to explain why they need a new family and to get them accustomed to their new home and brothers and sisters, but the children that Parents for Children specialises in helping are amongst the most troubled and demanding. They may have suffered abuse or neglect and need help to learn how to live in an ordinary family environment. They may have complex health or developmental problems and almost all of them will have experienced multiple moves in and out of care.

How we help you

Not only do we work with you throughout the adoption process, but Parents for Children offers our adoptive parents the ongoing training and support they need to take care of the children who join their families. We also offer a short breaks service, which is designed to give our adoptive parents a much-needed break to recharge their batteries and to offer their adopted children some fun with other experienced carers.

Contact with birth families

Although an adopted child loses all legal ties to their birth parents, they are likely to still have contact with their birth family. This could be visits a few times each year, or could be exchanging letters, cards, gifts and photographs, usually via a third party. Our specialist staff can help you and your family with advice on any issues you may have about contact.

Find out more

Adopting a Parents for Children child is a wonderful experience for most families. If you’d like to find out more, there’s lots more information to read on this site. If you’d like to talk to us about adopting a child with special needs, we would love to hear from you. You can register your interest online, email us at [email protected] or call 020 7520 2881 to talk to our adoption team.

There's also lots of useful information about adoption on the following websites:

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