An adoption service has issued a plea as thousands of children wait for their forever homes.

More than 2,000 children across the country are waiting to be adopted, says adoption service charity Caritas Care, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary next year.

The charity covers Cumbria, Lancashire and Manchester.

Lindsey Duckworth, Caritas Care marketing manager, said: "Adoption is a wonderful thing.

"It’s about belonging, it’s about growing and it is about providing a loving and stable home to a child or group of children in need.

"Do you enjoy walks in the park, bike rides, swimming, going to the cinema, holidays - if you answered yes to any of these questions then you’re on your way to having all the qualities we are looking for in an adopter."

Of the children waiting for adoption, approximately 60 per cent are brothers and sisters, over four, and have mild to profound additional needs.

These children wait the longest for adoption, with some waiting more than 18 months.

Caritas Care is among 36 Voluntary Adoption Agencies (VAAs) from all over the UK who have together created a guide containing helpful information and advice from parents who have already adopted sibling groups.

Susan Swarbrick, CEO at Caritas Care, said: "The impact on children in care who are separated from their brothers and sisters to enable them to find a permanent family is huge and causes anxiety and loss for children who have already experienced a difficult start in life.

"Yet so few people feel equipped or able to consider adopting a sibling group of three, or even four children."

Maggie Jones, the Consortium of Voluntary Adoption Agencies chief, stressed the importance of siblings staying together.

She said: "Brother and sisters who are adopted together are often the only constant thing in each other’s lives in times of huge upheaval, loss and trauma.

"The voluntary adoption sector are specialists in finding families for sibling groups and being there for them with bespoke packages of support for as long as its needed."

For more information reach Caritas Care on 0800 652 6955 or email

Information about the adoption process, the sibling advice guide, blogs, an enquiry form, and upcoming information events can be found at

A brochure can be downloaded at: