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SB Connect Winter 2016

Could you adopt a child?

Could you adopt a child? If so, we want to hear from you as the need for permanent homes for children in the Borders is as great as ever.

Speaking during National Adoption Week in November this year, Head of Integrated Children’s Services, Stella Everingham, said: “There are always children in the Scottish Borders who need adoption, so we want to hear from people who want to and are able to meet the challenge. A very wide range of people can meet children’s needs and no-one is automatically ruled out because of age, marital status, sexual orientation or income, although all these things are considered during the adoption assessment.

“What potential adopters do need to be aware of is that it’s a challenge that needs commitment, enthusiasm and understanding. The ordeal of no longer living with their birth family compounded by possible abuse, neglect or other traumatic experiences can stay with a person throughout their life. Adoption is not a cure. Parenting an adopted child is different from parenting a birth child. The child will have many needs and adoptive parents have to make significant changes in their lives to meet these needs.

“So why should you consider it? Well, we know that the commitment and love that adopters give to their children gives them the best chance they have to find happiness through childhood and become secure, independent adults.

“If you are thinking about adoption, pick up the phone and make an enquiry. You will be given lots of information and you may decide afterwards that it is not for you. Or you may realise that this is something you definitely want to do!”

For more information, call 01896 757 230 or come to the information session on Wednesday 8 December at Council HQ, Newtown St Boswells at 6pm.

case study

“Tanya and Tom* joined our family when they were four and five years old and we adopted them two years later.

“Before our children came to live with us they had lived with their birth parents, other family members, a number of foster carers for short periods and one set of foster carers for 18 months.

“Our children did not enjoy or do well through school and both left at 16 with very few qualifications. Despite that, they have both developed interests and have managed to find work.

“Our children, now 22 and 23 still live with us and we hope over the next year to support them into independence.

“We know families have difficulties but we believe there are extra things for our children. We will never know all they experienced in their first four and five years, but we know a lot of it was very hard and will affect them for all their lives. We love them and are pleased they joined our family.”


* Names have been changed.