According to an LGBT charity, Stoke-on-Trent is in need of more foster carers and adopters, to provide loving and stable homes for vulnerable children.
New Family Social, a charity that supports LGBT foster carers and adopters across the UK, is aiming to raise the number of people who will come forward to explore foster caring and adoption.
This is part of National LGBT Adoption and Fostering week which runs from March 5 to March 11.
With more than 72,000 children and young people currently in care in the UK, Stoke-on-Trent City Council is supporting the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Adoption and Fostering awareness week, to raise the profile of fostering and adoption in the LGBT community.
Currently there are only 8 foster carers that are LGBT in Stoke-on-Trent.
Councillor Ann James, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, says: “Many LGBT people often come to adoption and fostering with an open mind and real enthusiasm – its often their first choice for growing their family.
“Many children waiting to be adopted or fostered have had a very chaotic start to life, and we’ve seen them thrive with their new parents.
“You can be single, over 40 and you don’t need to own your own home to consider foster caring or adoption. We need people with stability, love and resourcefulness who can help a child with whatever needs they may have.”
Research shows that LGBT people have a high expectation of discrimination on the grounds of their sexual orientation, gender identity or both.
The campaign aims to bridge the gap between fostering and adoption agencies and LGBT applicants.
Tor Docherty, New Family Social’s Chief Executive, said: “Record numbers of LGBT people now adopt or foster.
“But YouGov polling shows many believe they’ll be discriminated against by agencies, with eight in ten lesbian, gay and bisexual people expecting to face barriers if they apply to become foster parents.
“We’re delighted that Stoke-on-Trent City Council is supporting the week and trying to encourage more LGBT people to explore adoption or foster caring.”