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Mixed race couple

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Hi, we are new to the adoption journey and I have been surprised by some of the information I have been given when ringing round different LAs and VAs for information. I wondered whether anyone can give us any advice?


I am white British and my husband is mixed race Asian and arabic. I thought there would be lots of children with a similar ethnic mix to us but from what I have been told there are very few. The LAs close to us mainly only have white children in their care so I contacted a consortium of London boroughs. The person I spoke to said that across five boroughs they have no children that we would be able to adopt and that it was best to go abroad. She said we couldn't be matched with a white child as they will almost always go to two white parents but that there were no mixed race children we could be matched with. We could adopt a child who was Indian or arabic but there weren't any in any case.


We don't mind what race a child is but understand that social workers prefer to match a child with a couple of a similar ethnic background, but am surprised that there are no children like us.


Does anyone have any advice of who would be best to approach? We are keen to adopt a sibling group.


Thanks


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The first thing is to go through the assessment process - which you can do through any LA (if they are willing to take you on) or a VA. I'm surprised that there are no LAs in London with mixed Asian / white or Asian children to place as the whole of London is so diverse and many of the boroughs have large Asian populations and also a fair number of middle eastern communities. I'm not sure if you've done that part yet. If not and you can't find a LA willing to take you on (as they often do just take the sort of families they are currently looking for) find a VA as they specialise in hard to place children. Once you have been approved you then start to look for suitable children and at that point you can apply for any children you think you are able to provide a suitable family for. If you are looking for an exact match that will indeed be difficult to find and the LAs you rang may have got that impression but otherwise I don't think there will be any difficulty in finding suitable children. Religion is another aspect to consider and often given more weight for obvious reasons. All these aspects will be addressed in the assessment process and you will need to demonstrate how you will be able to provide for a child's cultural needs - and your openness in doing so where family cultures may be different


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Thank you Safia, I am planning to ring round some more London boroughs with more Asian communities. I was also quite surprised as I told the lady we are open to adoting a child of any race but she said that they need to match them to your particular ethnic mix. It could be that that particular area tended to have more white children. I think we will probably go with a VA as we had some good encouragement from one that we went to an open day at and they said they can search for children all over the country. We're not religious ourselves but I had heard that if a child is taken into care their birth family can request for them to be placed with families of a particular religion. There's a lot to learn isn't there? But a very exciting journey. Thanks again.


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Hi Marzipan, I would suggest trying Coram.


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Hi there. My husband is white British and I am black with West Indian heritage. We registered with our local London Borough but was matched through another London Borough. Our children are from an eastern European and a west African heritage. We had to show how we would promote the children's heritage. When we were first assessed we saw a few children on linkmaker and children who wait who matched our ethnic mixed however by the time that we had passed our panel this was not the case. There were more African and white mix.


It is impossible to say what mix will be available once you pass but certainly you are more likely to get an Asian /white mix than an exact match. Our children's precise heritage is such an usual mix that it was extremely unlikely that they would find an exact heritage match. I do hope this helps.


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Our pixie is dual heritage (black/white) but a v unusual mix. The LA would have have been waiting a fair time (perhaps forever) to find a couple of his exact heritage. So I don't think your agency is quite right, OP!


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I'm Far East Asian and my DH is white British. We got approved only recently but I can see that there is a massive competition going on for Asian mixed children. Sometimes we get rejection message with how many people expressed interests in the child but the number is astonishing.

However, if you are happy to go for older children, sibling groups or children with high level of special needs, then you are likely to find one in wider proximity.

Hope you can find a right agency to help you.

Best wishes


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Hi, thank you everyone for all your helpful advice. I think we are going to go with a VA rather than an LA as advised. Hopefully there will be a child/sibling group out there that we can be matched with. We don't mind at all what the race of the children is so hopefully that with the fact we would like to adopt a group if possible will help.


I did ring another VA who also told me that it's taking a really long time to match people and you have to make yourself stand out to stand a chance of being picked as there are so many more adopters than children. Thanks for helping us decide which direction to go in, now we have to begin the process of researching and doing voluntary work.


All the best and congratulations to all of you who have your lovely families.


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Hi op you should ring Mosaic adoption (action for children ) they specialise in BME adoption they know actually witch LAs have what mix of children and its adopter led so you can start looking once you hVe yur panel date


I think they would recommend you looking up north Ect we are a mixed white / balck couple and were matched twice with in Few months of being approved


Being white /Arabic mixed your in stronger position than you think


A child who ethincly is unclear

Asian children

Asian/white mix children

Balck / Asian mix children

White / mixed raced mix children

So a lot to cover ring mosaic see what they say


Just had a look on children who wait and I spy one set of Asian sibs one set of Asian /white mix sibs and one single child from Iran so not sure what the la are on about really would think there be a lot more on link maker


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I know a white/Asian mixed race couple who adopted 2 white boys, so it does happen.


Good luck with the process.


We wanted a sibling pair. Matching took ages and we ended up convinced that our inflexibility in wanting 2 actually slowed things down. I think flexibility is key - ethnicity, gender, age.


But be clear about your matching criteria and get your SW to explain the possible consequences of everything in a child's profile before you agree to a match.


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Hi PurlOneKnitOne thank you very much for that advice and information.


It's really exciting to hear that there are children on the matching site who we could potentially be matched with so hopefully that will still be the case once we have gone through the process.


Thanks also for the info about Mosaic, I had a look at their website and will give them a call this week.


Thanks I really appreciate it Smile


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Hi Daffin, thanks also for your useful comments around flexibiltiy. It's good to know so much useful information at the start of the process. I hope you have now been successfully matched, it sounds like it from your message. Smile


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Just one more thing to add to the already very helpful comments. Keep stressing to everyone that you are more than happy to take on any child with a different ethnicity and how you would be able to promote their identity. Research, get to know people from different backgrounds etc. Also, specifically mention eastern European gypsy children. The Roma originally came from northern India and migrated to Europe but intermarried very little, if at all, with Europeans. So any child with that background may be a very good "visual" match if that is what social workers are bothered about.

We have birth children and made it clear that we wanted a visual match because we felt it would make it easier for our adopted child if they did not stand out. I think it has worked very well, as LO keeps pointing out to us the similarities of each family member with her. And no-one ever asks impertinent adoption questions because they won't know our child is adopted unless we decide they should know.


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Hi, we've been approved for a year now and finding matching very difficult as I'm white and my husband is asian(Indian), there are very few children that have any Indian heritage however I have seen a lot more children with Muslim or Arabic heritage so I think you will have as much as a problem getting matched as us depending on your husbands religion.


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I was told I wouldn't get a Indian child through adoption and was told to try abroad by all the London agencies.. some where quite rude. Any way we went with a va agency and was approved Dec 15, brought home my son in sept 16.. last year I saw several children which where of Asian backgrounds, as some Asian children are so fair skinned a mixed parent couple would easily work. We was matched using link maker to a Indian heritage child,


If religion is not an issue you may find it easier.

Don't give up - go for it


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Hi MinionMe thank you very much for your reply, I hope that you won't have to wait too long to be matched. May I ask, have you been told that you can only be matched with a child who meets your exact ethnic mix or is that your preference?

I found that different places have said different things, but at one of our appointments we were told that you can be matched with a child of a different ethnic background to you, although they prefer to match you up. We are open to a child of any ethnicity so am not sure whether this will make a difference.


Wishing you all the best.


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Hi Anita3 thanks for your reply, congratulations on your son! I was also given similar advice by the places I contacted in London, but from what I've heard it seems linkmaker seems to have a mixture of children from different backgrounds. It's good to hear from people here that they have been matched despite being from ethnicities where there may be fewer children who need to be adopted. All the best.


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Not a problem, yes last year link maker had a lot of different Asian and some mixed heritage children. We was open to any Asian ethnic background, but was lucky to find an exact match.


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"The person I spoke to said that across five boroughs they have no children that we would be able to adopt and that it was best to go abroad. She said we couldn't be matched with a white child as they will almost always go to two white parents but that there were no mixed race children we could be matched with. "


I find that a really wierd response, and obviously a very problematic sentiment. My experience 'oop north is:


No absolute bar on any ethnicity. LAs can be pickier these days but black kids still sometimes go to white parents because of the difference in availability.


Mixed ethnicity parents are often preferred for exactly the reasons purlone explained above.


Lots of Asian and mixed heritage kids available (well that's relative to the number of adopters from these backgrounds).


Given all that my advice would be consider going with a VA who will search nationally. Perhaps the issue is London specific. Perhaps the person you spoke to is an idiot. I cannot imagine you will wait years if you are willing to adopt a sibling group and choose a good VA.


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Hi Marzipan, we know that an exact ethnic match is very unlikely and have only ever seen a couple children with any Indian heritage on linkmaker. We have been looking nationally for almost a year now as our local authority allowed us to do so as soon as approved as they didn't think it likely that we would get matched locally as only white children. We are open to any ethnicity, preferably dual heritage but constantly get turned away when we enquire about children with comments from social workers that they are looking for a closer ethnic match which is quite frustrating.


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Hi Matimeo, thanks for the advice, I was surprised also at what the person said. I think going on all the excellent advice I've been given here, Linkmaker will most probably be the way forward for us, it sounds as though there are children in other parts of the country who would hopefully be a good match for us.


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Hi MinionMe, I do hope that you will find a match very soon, it sounds like you've been through quite a frustrating situation. Wishing you all the best of luck.


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Hi Marzipan. Just realised I didn't look at the date of your OP. Apologies that some of the advice (like choosing a VA) is a bit pointless.


It's always a little voodoo about how/why some match quickly and other's don't. I think it's reasonable to suggest that if your LA have nothing available, they aren't going to be looking hard for you. There was another thread in a similar position recently, that you might look for. I'm sure you've tried a lot of these, but I'll list some suggestions anyway:


1. Get children who wait, as well as link maker.

2. Go to every activity day and exchange event you can.

3. Ask your SW for some very blunt feedback: Is ethnicity the only barrier? Is there anything else you can do to make yourselves more attractive?

4. Get more childcare experience if you can. You only have enough if you are spending time every week helping SN kids and have a PhD in child development.

5. Make (or tart up if you have one) a one page flyer, with photo, that summaries your PAR- emphasise your key selling points, but keep it factual and tied to the PAR. Post it to every LA in the country (or target some areas you think might have kids), ideally with a covering letter from your SW.


Best of luck,


Matt


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Thanks Matt, we get children who wait and are very active on adoption link, our social worker has also been very actively looking. Funnily enough we have just had a meeting and she said it is very difficult to get other social workers to give honest feedback on why they are not choosing us, she does think though that our par needs updating and rewriting (it was written by a different social worker) so that's the next plan.


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Difficult to get feed back why not chosen? This is because the reasons are seldom objective, they can not say 'I liked the other couple better, got a better feeling with them'. 'Your house smelled strange', 'you looked so nervous', 'I instantly disliked your husband', 'what a horrible place to live', 'yek three cats in the house', etc, etc.

So they come up with silly excuses or you hear nothing.


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Hi Pluto, it was feedback from the par I was referring to, not matching meetings, you would think it would be easy enough to be honest about what they are unsure about or puts them off when they've not actually met you yet.


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