London’s LGBT community urged to consider parenthood during Adoption and Fostering Week

A rallying call for more members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to take up the adoption and fostering mantle is being issued by Merton Council.

The council’s adoption team will be on hand at a free central London event on March 6, hosted by charity New Family Social, to mark the start of LGBT Adoption and Fostering Week.

Attendees will get the chance to hear first-hand experiences from adoptive parents, foster carers and speak to agencies about the process of becoming a carer.

Cabinet member for children’s services, Councillor Maxi Martin said, “It is great to see so many people from the LGBT community stepping forward to offer children a safe and happy home.

“Merton’s fostering and adoption team give excellent support to make becoming a foster carer or adoptive parent as smooth as possible and a completely positive experience.

“We need more safe and stable homes for children in the borough and if you want to make the first move to become a carer, attend the free event next Friday where all your burning questions will be answered.”

Robert, from London, was approved as a foster carer by a Local Authority in 2011.

Despite admitting it was an initially intense process he said that the social workers’ guidance helped him to prepare for whatever situations he was thrown into.

He said: “My path into fostering was fuelled by two things – my love of working with children and desire to have a family as well as from working professionally with some amazing foster carers in my work and being inspired by the impact that their involvement made on the children.

“Life with the children now is great –I love it! I’ve got two children at the moment, one aged 7 who has been with me for 14 months and one who is 11 and who arrived 3 days ago on an emergency placement.

“They are great and I love having them at home.  At times it can be tricky with the logistics of doing school runs and arrangements for contact with parents but it all works out in the end!”

This year marks the tenth anniversary since LGBT couples were given the same equal legal rights as heterosexual adopters.

In England, Wales and Scotland the number of children adopted by same sex couples has more than tripled from 90 in 2007 to 370 in 2014.

The event will take place at River Court, 120 Fleet Street, London, EC4A 2BE, from 6.30-8.30pm.

Picture courtesy of gabi menashe, with thanks

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