Want to adopt?

Find out more about adoption

Many more people can adopt than you might think! You can be over 40, gay or straight, single, divorced or cohabiting, already have children, live in rented accommodation, be unemployed, have a low income or have a disability.

Adoption is a lifelong commitment requiring time, understanding, energy, patience – and a sense of humour! But there can be no greater reward than transforming a child’s life forever and building a happy, fulfilled family.

If you want to find out more about becoming an adopter the following organisations can offer help, advice and support.


First4Adoption is the national information service for people thinking of adopting a child in England. Their information line is open 10am – 6pm, Monday – Friday on 0300 2220022 to answer all your adoption questions. First4Adoption will also be open to take your calls about any aspect of the adoption process for an hour after each show, from 10pm Thursdays. Get in touch with them on 0300 222 0022.


If you are based in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and would like more information about adoption, contact the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF).

Adoption UK

Adoption UK is a national charity that works with and on behalf of adoptive parents, prospective adopters and carers providing post-adoption support and training.


CVAA a charity that represents voluntary adoption agencies across the UK. You can be assessed and approved as an adopter by voluntary as well as local authority adoption agencies; the most important thing is finding the right agency to suit you.

New Family Social

New Family Social is the UK network for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) adoptive and foster families. Whether you are still deciding how to form your family, are on the way to being a parent, or are busy getting on with family life, you can find others near you in the same situation to share your journey.

How has adoption changed?

50 years ago there were around 20,000 babies a year adopted, many reluctantly given up by single mothers who could not face the social stigma and hardship of being an unmarried mum with an illegitimate child. Happily, today things have changed, but there are for many different reasons still thousands of children in need of adoption, and there simply aren’t enough adopters for them.

Now, nearly all of the children waiting to be adopted are in foster care, as it has been decided that they can no longer be brought up by their birth families. They have had a hard start in life and many have experienced some form of abuse or neglect. All these children need a loving, stable home.