ADOPTION agencies have launched an urgent appeal to find a forever home for three brothers they are keen to keep together.

The boys – aged four, six and eight and from the North-East – have had a tough start in life but are said to be "full of fun and personality".

Adopt Coast to Coast, the regional adoption agency for Cumbria County Council, Durham County Council and Together for Children which delivers children’s services on behalf of Sunderland City Council, has issued an appeal for prospective adopters as they are look to find the trio a permanent home.

But, because sibling groups are harder to place, the team knows that the brothers may have to be separated in order to increase their chances of finding forever homes.

Paula Gibbons, head of service for Adopt Coast to Coast, said: “We have a limited time to find a forever home for the three brothers together.

"They love to be outside exploring, learning new things, and having adventures.

"The boys have had a tough start in life, but they are a wonderful team with cheeky smiles, and they are full of fun and personality, but they also love to cuddle up and watch a film.

“The brothers have a strong bond which we really want to maintain, and in light of our time limitations and the new nationwide #YouCanAdopt campaign surrounding the benefits of sibling adoption, we are encouraging anyone who would like to find out more about the boys and the other brothers and sisters in our care to come forward.

"There is plenty of support available – from the financial to the practical – for those who decide they can.”

The appeal was made as the new #YouCanAdopt national sibling campaign got underway to highlight the benefits of adopting family groups of children together.

Latest figures show that 44 per cent of the 2,020 children waiting to be adopted in England are in family groups of two or more.

Groups of children wait an average of 17 months to be adopted, which is 135 days more than individual children, and more than half of these groups even wait more than 18 months for their new family.

The same research showed that many adopters feel adopting children with their brothers or sisters has been the most beneficial factor in their children’s adoption journey – with benefits including increased reassurance and comfort.

Dr Elizabeth Kilbey, child psychologist and supporter of the campaign, said: “The brother and sister bond can offer incredible life-changing benefits throughout all aspects and stages of children’s lives.

"This is especially pertinent for adopted children, with #YouCanAdopt’s research showing the bond can support mental health, emotional wellbeing, social skills, and help children settle into a new family.

"Because of this, parents that adopt brothers and sisters together may find their experience benefitted by the support they can offer one another.”

Find out more about adopting with Adopt Coast to Coast visit or call 03000-268268.