Stories

National Adoption Week: Celebrating Families

Did you know there are currently 1,089 children across the UK waiting to find loving stable families? To celebrate National Adoption Week we want to share two incredible stories.

We talked to two couples who describe adoption as “the best decision we ever made” and something that “made our lives complete”. Both have chosen to share their stories to encourage others to open their homes and their hearts to vulnerable children.

Saqib and Mehvish’s story 

Saqib and Mehvish had their son through IVF after many years of fertility treatment. They always wanted to expand their family and chose adoption as the route to doing so. After contacting a number of agencies they chose Barnardo’s to guide them through the adoption process. They said:

“We chose Barnardo’s as we just had a really good feeling on speaking to them – over and above the others.”

It took their daughter time too to really feel safe in their love. Sabiq said:

“It took eight months for my daughter to come and snuggle with me on the sofa and that was such a special moment for me as previously she had always gone to my wife or son. Another turning point was when she hurt herself and came to us for comfort. She is fiercely independent and this was another breakthrough.”

Because she has been adopted big changes can unsettle their daughter and make her seek more reassurance. But Sabiq and Mehvish are always there to provide reassurance and make sure their daughter knows that she is part of the family, very loved and here to stay.

Part of the family 

“Being adopted makes our daughter feel special. She is the noise, the energy, the madness in the house. I think adoption is not about the things you materially provide but about making a child feel safe, loved and a blessing for the family; somewhere they can feel a sense of belonging and being wanted.”

Barnardo’s support made a real difference 

The adoption process was made so much easier, every step of the way by the support from Barnardo’s. Saqib said:

“We have had incredible support from Barnardo’s even post placement which I actually think is when you need it the most. We had a fantastic social worker. I would say they are lifelong friends. Through the process we‘ve learnt so much and it’s confirmed to us that good parenting is child centered parenting.

“To us, Barnardo’s feels like family and we’ll be forever grateful to them for they helped us to complete ours.”

Nick and Adam’s story 

From their very first date, Nick and Adam talked about having children together. As their relationship grew they started to think more seriously about it and decided that adoption was the right way forward. They describe adoption as the best decision they have ever made. They said:

“We considered various options, such as surrogacy, but we felt there were lots of children who had already been born, who didn’t have a family to support them, so adoption was the logical choice.”

Why they chose Barnardo’s 

Nick and Adam attended many open evenings with different adoption organisations but were impressed by the friendly and personal approach offered by Barnardo’s. Nick said:

“There were some relatively deep questions but they never felt invasive, and we were supported by a fantastic social worker who made sure it was a pleasant experience.

“She was relaxed and friendly, and would sit on our sofa with a cup of tea and chat to us for hours. It just felt very laid-back, which helped to remove any anxiety.”

“From 0-3 in one go”

Only a month after the initial application process a social worker approached the couple hoping to find a home for three young siblings. They admit that it was a “big leap” to go from having no children to having three, but say they have no regrets.

Nick and Adam took great care to make sure that the children would feel safe and welcome in their family, making sure they could slowly get to know them both and find out about their new home

“The best decision we ever made” 

Nick says:

“Some people are amazed that we went from 0-3 children in one go, but we just feel very lucky. Both of us are from close-knit families and we remember enjoying lots of get-together with relatives. That’s one of the things we’re looking forward to providing to our own children as they get older, giving them the same happy memories. Our children had a difficult start in life, but now they’re completely comfortable in their own skin. They’re confident, they’re doing well at school and they’re making friends. It’s been hard work but adoption was easily the best decision Adam and I ever made.”

Watch our video where we speak to more adopters as well as those who have been adopted:

To find out more about adoption visit: www.barnardos.org.uk/adoption