Stagework: Adoption and Coram Boy

The Stagework website looks at the issue of adoption in Coram Boy:

Coram Boy, both as a novel by Jamila Gavin and as a play by Helen Edmundson, offers an extraordinary insight into the often dark and dangerous world of mid-eighteenth-century London and especially the vulnerability of children. As the story tells, Thomas Coram, together with other inspired men of the time, like the great composer George Frideric Handel, helped to found a refuge in London for the many babies abandoned on the streets by their desperate mothers. The Coram Hospital and the children who made it their home play a central role in the novel and the play.

Although no longer an orphanage, the legacy of Thomas Coram lives on in the form of the Coram Family, a charity that exists in order to help those seeking to adopt a child into a loving family. The Coram Family look for people who can provide the necessary quality of care and then to help in the complex and often lengthy process that takes place before a child can legally be adopted. Always the interests of the child, the birth parents, and the prospective adoptive parents need to be safeguarded. In England today there are approximately 3,500 children seeking adoption [Now 4,000 (2011)], of whom about half are under the age of five. Prospective parents can come from all walks of life: whatever their race, religion, sexual orientation, all can be considered .

Children who are adopted are very rarely orphans, and once a child is adopted, or during the process of becoming legally adopted, he or she is encouraged (if they wish) to stay in contact with their birth parent(s) and to remain connected to their past by being helped to make a ‘life-story book’. You can find out more at the Coram Family website.

You can view current adoption statistics in England and Wales on the British Association for Adopting and Fostering website



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