As the 3rd annual LGBT Adoption and Fostering Week approaches, LGBT people are encouraged to learn more about the possibility of adoption and fostering.

The week, run by the UK’s LGBT adoption and fostering charity New Family Social, runs from 3-9 March 2014.

Events will be taking place across the country, with details of local events available at the LGBT Fostering and Adoption Week website. 

The flagship events will take place in London on 7 March at 6.30pm, and in Manchester on 6 March at the same time. Events are free to attend, and will include information on the assessment processes and testimony from existing LGBT adopters and foster carers.

New Family Social is also hoping to have LGBT foster carers or adopters, or those considering adoption or fostering fill in a survey to mark the launch of LGBT Adoption and Fostering Week on 3 March. The survey can be accessed here.

LGBT Fostering Adoption Week logo

The British Association of Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) says an estimated 4,000 children need adopting every year, with the Fostering Network stating that around 9,000 extra foster carers are needed to bridge the shortfall for children currently in care.

However, experts say this could be done if just two percent of LGBT people came forward to foster or adopt.

Nonetheless, LGBT adoption is currently on the increase as in 2011-12, 160 same-sex couples adopted, representing 4% of UK adoptions for that year, but in 2012-13, 230 same-sex couples adopted, increasing to 6% of the total UK adoptions that year.

With the addition of gay single people, trans people, bisexual people in opposite-sex relationships, LGBT people are becoming a sizable portion of adopters.

PinkNews.co.uk is a media partner of New Family Social.