Let's Stay Together

Could you help keep a family together? This year’s National Adoption Week (3– 9 November) focuses on siblings in a bid to encourage more people to come forward and adopt brothers and sisters.

Currently there are seven sets of siblings in desperate need of a loving family across the three WWiSH (Warrington, Wigan and St Helens) authorities - five groups of two siblings and two groups of three. Since 2013, there has been a 65 per cent decrease in the number of sibling groups waiting to be adopted.

Earlier this year, Channel 4’s 15,000 Kids and Counting showed siblings, Lauren and Liam placed with a loving family.

The programme gave viewers unprecedented access into the adoption process, giving them a glimpse into the difficult, but rewarding journey social workers face when searching for a forever family.

Social worker Annette, 35, from Wigan, was described as a hero by the press and the public. Her commitment to the children in her care, including siblings Lauren and Liam, had viewers on the edge of their seats.

She said: “When we think about keeping siblings together, we tend to consider our own sibling relationships and our children’s sibling relationships. While a joint placement is not always appropriate, there are real benefits of placing siblings together.

“Children in foster care experience a variety of emotions which include sadness, loss, confusion and even guilt. Some children will have gone through traumatic experiences and have those emotions to deal with on top of that. Having a sibling with them can help them with these feelings, as well as supporting the child to maintain a sense of identity when everything else familiar to them is gone.

“I believe siblings remaining together, when it is appropriate and safe, helps them re-build their individual strength and resilience. Siblings are a source of support to one another. Not only this but they learn skills from one another and develop empathy as a result of that sibling relationship.”

The WWiSH Team will be out and about as part of National Adoption Week. Outreach sessions will be taking place across Warrington, Wigan and St.Helens:

  • Monday 3rd November, 11am-3pm
    Orford Park, Warrington
  • Wednesday 5th November, 11am-3pm
    Grand Arcade, Wigan
  • Friday 7th November, 11am-3pm
    Hardshaw Centre, St.Helens

If you have enough love for more than one child, find out more information here: 01942 487272 or email wwish@wigan.gov.uk.

Local Life - November 2014