Wirral supports regional adoption campaign

19 April 2024
Young women pushing girl on swing

Wirral is joining adoption agencies across the North West region to find families for the children who usually wait the longest to be adopted. 

The ‘Growing Families Together’ campaign, launched by Adoption North West, will encourage potential adopters to open their homes and end the wait for many youngsters.  

Children aged three and over are often classed as “older children” in the world of adoption. This means they tend to wait some of the longest times to be placed with their adoptive families, along with children with additional needs, those in sibling groups, or children from global majority backgrounds. 

The latest data shows that at the end of last year, across the North West: 

  • 318 children were waiting for an adoptive family 
  • 134 of these children were aged 3 years and above 

Elizabeth Hartley, Director for Children, Families and Education at Wirral Council said:People may think they might struggle to build a family bond by adopting a child over age three but, on the contrary, there are so many ‘firsts’ to be discovered with slightly older kids 

“Adoptive parents may get to experience the joy of huge milestones in a young person’s life such as their first days at school, teaching them to ride a bike or cheering them on as they score their first goal. The strength of a parent-child bond is not determined by the starting age but by the depth of care and support provided – and with dedication and patience, families can create strong, lifelong bonds. 

“If you or anyone you know is thinking of adopting, it would be fantastic to see more people opening their hearts and homes to these young people.” 

The campaign shares real-life adoption stories from people across the region who have welcomed children from this age group into their lives.   

Single adopter Heather, the oldest of four siblings, had always wanted to be a Mum, and adopted her daughter when she was nearly five years old. Heather said: “With an older child, you’ll probably know more about them and what their needs are. People think babies come with less complications, but I don’t believe that’s true. Maybe their needs aren’t obvious or known, or haven’t developed yet.” 

Heather has since gone on to adopt again, becoming a family of three. 

The Growing Families Together campaign also aims to challenge common misconceptions and encourage more individuals, couples and families to consider and embrace the joys of adopting a child over three. It will also look to break down some of the misconceptions about who can adopt such as:   

  • You can be single, living with a partner, married or divorced  
  • You can from any ethnicity or religious background  
  • You can identify as LGBTQ+  
  • You can be a homeowner or live in rented accommodation  
  • You can be employed, unemployed or retired  
  • You can be starting your family or growing your family.  

To find out more information including video interviews with real-life adopters visit:  


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