As National Adoption Week gets underway next week, South Tyneside Council is encouraging potential adoptive parents to find out if adoption could be right for them.
This year's national campaign highlights the need for loving, stable families for children who cannot live with their birth parents, especially for sibling groups.
As part of the campaign, South Tyneside Council's adoption team will have an information stand at Sainsbury's on the Team Valley in Gateshead next Monday (16 October). Staff will be on hand between 10am and 7pm to offer advice to anyone considering adopting.
People can also find out more at two information sessions on Thursday, 19 October. Anyone interested in finding out more about adoption can drop in to 16 Barrington Street, South Shields, NE33 1AN between 1pm and 5pm or from 6pm to 7.30pm.
South Tyneside Council is looking for more people to consider becoming adoptive parents for babies, young children and sibling groups to enable brothers and sisters to remain together.
People from all walks of life and backgrounds are welcome to come along and find out whether adoption might be for them. Single people, couples, including same-sex couples, people from ethnic minorities and families from South Tyneside and further afield are encouraged to find out more.
One adoptive parent, who cannot be identified, said: "My wife and I have adopted twice with South Tyneside Council. We welcomed three adorable brothers into our home in 2013 and continued to receive great support from the team.
"In January 2016 we decided we would like to extend our family, with the addition of a girl. We had absolutely no hesitation in contacting South Tyneside once again. Once more, we have been welcomed and guided through the process with both complete and courteous care and professionalism. We are now proud parents to a baby girl and we are thrilled, as are her three big brothers."
Comprehensive training is delivered to people interested in adopting and ongoing support is given throughout by the Council's experienced adoption workers.
Councillor Joan Atkinson, Lead Member for Families, Children and Young People, said: "Adoptive parents play an incredibly important role in offering a stable, loving home to our young people who, for whatever reason, cannot be with their birth families.
"The decision to become an adoptive parent is a potentially life-changing one. However, people who have adopted tell me the rewards are huge.
"I would encourage anyone thinking about adopting to come along to one of these information events and find out the facts from professionals."
Anyone unable to make any of the sessions but who is interested in finding out more adoption is asked to call the Council's adoption team on (0191) 423 8500 or email email@example.com