strip A new life together

Bernadette and Matt Latimer, adoptive parents to four siblings (L-R) Zander, Isaac, Matt, Eve, Bernadette and Zavier.

One of the things that made us want to look after siblings, is that we didn’t want anyone to be pulled apart. We didn’t want them to go to different homes where they’d grow up not knowing their family.

That’s why we have decided to give Zander, Eve, Isaac and Zavier a permanent place to call home. It has changed all our lives forever, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

When they first came into our care, my husband Matt and I were over the moon. I just wanted to hug them and not let them go. And now that we’ve adopted them, we can stay together as a family.

We’ve watched each and every one of them grow in confidence and blossom into their own unique personalities. It’s such a proud moment for us as parents to know that we’re making a real difference to their lives. We have built so much trust with them and as a result, the love between us just continues to build.

As the eldest sibling, Zander had to shoulder a lot of the responsibilities caring for his younger brothers and sister. But now that he has the chance to simply enjoy his youth, Zander’s a whole new person. He is in the top 10% of his selective high school and has been awarded the Volunteer of the Year Award for his involvement with our local surf lifesaving club. As parents, we give them every opportunity to participate in extra-curricular activities. We want them to experience everything life has to offer.

I would definitely encourage people to take on siblings because these kids need that security. So many have been pulled apart already, that’s why open adoption is so fulfilling – it transforms
their lives.

And as our beautiful 13-year-old daughter Eve said about being adopted with her brothers, “We all get to feel safe and happy together and we all get to be in the same new life together.”

Learn more about how you can make a difference through fostering.

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The National Redress Scheme

Barnardos supports the National Redress Scheme to provide support to people who experienced institutional child sexual abuse. Applications for the National Redress Scheme can be made