A mother has spoken of her joyful first Christmas with her adopted children to encourage others to give the gift of a home.
Durham County Council has 27 children waiting for adoption and, this festive season, the authority is appealing to people to consider providing a family and a future to youngsters in care.
For Sara and her partner, bringing home their two toddlers in October 2013 was the happiest day of their lives, and they will never forget their magical first Christmas together.
“It was the most amazing type of chaos we could imagine,” said Sara. “Before we knew it trees and decorations were up, a little higher than usual, and the glass baubles were replaced with name and first Christmas baubles.
“We ordered matching Christmas jumpers and booked into every family Santa experience known to man. A little over the top we admit now, but then this was our Christmas, this was Santa bringing us what we had wanted for so long, our family.
“Christmas week was magical, wrapping all over the place, more toys than we had room for and family faces filled with such joy that we had brought these beautiful, happy children into their lives and that we were complete.”
Sara and her partner adopted through Durham County Council, and they are keen to share the wonderful impact it has had on their lives.
“We cherish every moment and wear our adoption journey proudly on our sleeves,” she said.
“We will inform, educate and try to prove to anyone we meet that if you want to be a parent you can, and adoption works. We have never looked back on the experience with anything but appreciation for what we went through, where we ended up and what we achieved.”
Cllr Olwyn Gunn, Cabinet member for children and young people’s services at the council, said: “This is such a heart-warming story of a family’s first Christmas.
“Sara and her partner have provided two children with a loving home and a promising future, and they too have the family they always wanted.
“Anyone considering adoption please contact us to find out about the support we offer.”
Families are needed for children of all ages and backgrounds, from babies and toddlers, to older children and young people. Some children have special needs and others are looking for family where they can live with their brothers and sisters.
Adoptive parents can come from all walks of life and all enquiries are welcomed, regardless of gender, ethnic origin, class, culture, sexuality or relationship status.
Extensive training and support is also offered at every stage of the adoption journey.
To find out more about adoption in County Durham, visit www.durham.gov.uk/adoption