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Adopting in Waltham Forest

Information on adopting in Waltham Forest including the adoption process and information sessions

Last updated: 7 February 2023

If you want to transform a child’s life through adoption, we are here to help. If you’re aged 21 or over and can offer a child love as well as support in a stable and nurturing home, you can apply to adopt.

In Waltham Forest, there are children of different ages and sibling groups from many different backgrounds who need homes.

Waltham Forest is part of a regional adoption agency called Coram Ambitious for Adoption. We aim to make the process of being approved as an adoptive parent as smooth as possible. Coram Adoption considers potential families looking to adopt from across the capital, and brings together shared expertise to help more children find the security of an adoptive family.

Who can adopt?

Coram accepts applications from single people, married and civil partnership couples, and unmarried couples, regardless of sexuality. You can own or rent your home, as long as there is space for a child to have a room of their own. You do not have to be in employment and can be from any borough, not only Waltham Forest. You can have any cultural or religious background.

Qualities 

To become an adoptive parent you will need:

  • patience
  • humour
  • energy
  • determination

Start your adoption journey

If you are thinking about adoption, start by visiting Coram's dedicated website where you’ll find lots of information about all aspects of adopting a child, including videos and interviews with adopters.

There are details of our latest adoption events which are a great way to find out more about the process and you can find out how our friendly team can help you start your adoption journey.

Visit the Coram Ambitious for Adoption website to learn more, or, if you have particular questions relating to your own circumstances, email us at adoption@coram.org.uk or call 020 7520 0383.

Support for adoptive families

Support is available for all adoptive families who live in or who have adopted children placed by Waltham Forest Council in the last three years. 

  • We can offer general advice, support and guidance on accessing universal services for adoptive families in the borough.
  • Some adoptive children will have experienced early life trauma, or need support in understanding their life story. Some adoptive parents will need additional therapeutic support to meet the needs of their children. We can make applications on your behalf for funding for therapeutic services for your family, via an adoption support needs assessment. More information about the Adoption Support Fund is  available on the First4Adoption website
  • We can refer adoptive parents for parental counselling sessions with our partner PAC-UK
  • We can offer you training opportunities if you sign up to our mailing list

Email adoption@walthamforest.gov.uk for more details.

There are also lots of universal services available for all families residing in Waltham Forest:

Access to adoption records

We can help adopted adults (over 18) who now reside in Waltham Forest access their adoption records. This can help you know more about your early life and the reasons you came into care or the circumstances around your adoption.

If you believe you were adopted by Waltham Forest Council, and want to see your adoption records, we can advise you on where to contact to access your records.

Contact adoption@walthamforest.gov.uk for more details.

Family Connect can help you make a decision and prepare for finding out more about your adoption records, and possibly tracing your birth family.

More information about accessing your birth records is also on the Government website under Adoption Records.

Overseas adoption

If you are interested in adopting a child from abroad, please visit the ICA centre website. Waltham Forest and our partners Coram Ambitious for Adoption Regional Adoption Agency do not assess adopters to adopt internationally.

If you have already adopted a child from abroad, you may be entitled to support. Please email adoption@walthamforest.gov.uk for more information.

Advice and counselling for birth parents and birth relatives

PAC-UK offers advice and counselling in various areas:

  • if you need to talk to someone about your adoption loss,
  • access to short-term counselling
  • information about the adoption process
  • connecting with other birth parents

If you are a birth parent who is involved in court proceedings and are worried you may lose your child to adoption, you are entitled to advice and counselling. Please email adoption@walthamforest.gov.uk if you would like more information.

Advice and Support

PAC-UK also has an advice line you can call for specialist advice on all aspects of adoption.

Call the London office Advice Line on 020 7284 5879. Lines are open Monday, Tuesday and Friday 10am to 4pm and Wednesday and Thursday 2pm to 7.30pm