National Adoption Week 2021 takes place on Monday 18 through to Sunday 24 October.
This year, the week aims to educate and inform people on the process of modern adoption today, with a rounded, honest, and inclusive portrayal of the journey – showcasing the highs and lows and championing all the voices involved in the process that are often less heard. These include adopted children, adopted adults, adoptive parents, birth parents, and the adoption and social care workforce that work tirelessly to get children into loving permanent homes.
An emotive animated short film, created by illustrator and adopter Garry Parsons has been released featuring real life stories of everyone involved in the adoption process – an adopted child, a single parent, an adopted person, a birth mother, social workers, and family members who watched loved ones go through the process.
The four-minute animated film features the life stories and real voices of six people that have had their lives changed by adoption – birth mother Anna*, single mum and adopter Sarah*, social worker Paula, 11-year-old Roman who was adopted age five, 19-year-old Tiegan who was adopted age four, and Sue who supported her daughter through the adoption process.
Tiegan, age 19, who features in the short film said: “Being adopted has been an incredibly positive experience for me. I love my adoptive mums and I have good relationships with many birth relatives, but it is important people don’t look at adoption with rose tinted glasses. Growing up would have been much easier for me if people had a better understanding of adoption and how this shaped me as a person.”
Cllr Sarah Hall, Cabinet Member, Children’s Services said, said: “Each adopted child has their own unique stories to tell. While adoption has been an incredibly rewarding experience for many of these children, we cannot underestimate the complexities of adoption and its historical difficulties. National Adoption Week is a chance for every single person touched by adoption to feel seen, heard, valued and understood.”
With 2,100 children currently waiting to be adopted, National Adoption Week sets out to educate people about how to adopt. Despite the fact most people are likely able to adopt and 41% know something about eligibility, applications, and the support available to adopters, 80% of adults say they don’t have a good understanding of how to start the process. Further showing the need to continue educating people about adoption today, over half (59%) were not aware that adoption should only be considered as a last resort for children after all other options are explored.
A series of events offering insight, advice, and support to adopted adults, adopters, birth families and adoption professionals will be taking place from 18th October. To find out more about National Adoption Week or to seek information or support, visit www.youcanadopt.co.uk/NAW