Plea to adopt three-year-old Grace receives hundreds of responses ahead of Christmas

Grace is "as bright as anything"

Alexandra Sims
Friday 23 October 2015 14:57 BST
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The children waiting longest for adoptive families have an average age of just 4 years
The children waiting longest for adoptive families have an average age of just 4 years (Getty)

A public appeal has been launched to find a home for a little girl unable to find a permanent family since being taken into care at birth.

Grace was taken into adoption after her mother became unable to look after her following a brain injury.

The three-year-old is being cared for by her foster mother and father, Jill and Paul, who have fostered 40 children over the last 19 years.

However the couple are nearing retirement and want to find a new family for Grace, who they describe as "incredibly loving and playful".

The appeal has been launched by First4Adoption, a dedicated information service for people interested in adopting a child in England, as part of National Adoption Week.

Since launching their appeal, the organisation has been contacted by hundreds of people hoping to adopt Grace.

Staff now say they are sifting through the applications of all who have offered her a home, focusing on those already approved for adoption in the hope a home can be found for her as quickly as possible, according to The Mirror.

Grace’s birth mother suffered severe pre-eclampsia during pregnancy and her daughter, who was born 25 weeks premature and weighing 1.3lbs, was left with cerebral palsy and chronic lung disease.

Despite fears from doctors she may never walk, Grace has made astonishing progress and now "bops around everywhere", according to her foster mother.

Jill, 57, told The Mirror: “To meet Grace, you would never know she was unwell at all.

“She is so full of energy and is so happy. She takes everything in her stride."

Despite homes being found for both of Grace's siblings, she has been up for adoption since birth, without yet finding a family.

First4Adoption say potential donors sometimes fear children approaching school age will be harder to cope with, however the agency's own study has found this is not the case.

The service found people who live with children are twice as likely to say that children of four and over are "less demanding" than those under four.

First4Adoption's National Adoption Week is raising awareness for the children waiting longest for adoptive families whose average age is just 4 years.

There are over 3,000 children in England who need to be adopted, the charity explain, coming from a variety of different ethnic and religious backgrounds and some may have disabilities or special needs.

Grace still suffers from cerebral palsy, has problems eating and is frequently ill, requiring her to be monitored throughout the night.

If you are interested in adopting Grace, or another child, call First4Adoption on 0300222022 or follow the link to www.first4adoption.

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