Prospective parents are being urged to discover how they could provide a “forever family” for a County Durham child.

In recent years there has been an increase in the numbers of people coming forward to provide loving homes for children – leading to some misconceptions that there is no longer a need for others to show an interest.

But this National Adoption Week Durham County Council is seeking to spread the word that the work is not over – and asking everyone to show that they are #SupportingAdoption.

The council’s head of children’s services, Carole Payne, said: “Whether it is within your own family, in your neighbourhood, at work or school, chances are you or someone you know will have been touched by adoption.

“Here in County Durham we already support many prospective parents so they can provide children with a loving ‘forever home’ – but we know there are more would-be mums and dads out there who could work with us to create or add to their families.

“We currently have 22 children waiting for adoption, and for a variety of reasons more may come into our care at any time.

“That is why this National Adoption Week we are asking everyone who can to spread the word about adoption, so that we can find the right people to provide the stability, safety and security that every child deserves.”

According to a new YouGov survey commissioned by the national information service First4Adoption, almost two thirds of people in the North East have an above average knowledge when it comes to adoption – But there are always opportunities to improve on that.

The council believes that adopted children should have an enjoyable childhood, and benefit from excellent parenting and education, with a wide range of opportunities to develop their talents and skills, leading to a successful adult life.

And to try and ensure that happens we operate a two stage assessment process to make sure we match the right adults with children.

If you are interested becoming an adoptive parent please fill in the form at www.durham.gov.uk/adoption.

And show your support by telling us your feelings about adoption on social media using the hashtags #Supporting Adoption and #AdoptInDurham.