Benjamin Carpenter


West Yorkshire


Michael Underwood, Benjamin Carpenter BCAe, Will Gore, The Independent

Michael Underwood, Benjamin Carpenter BCAe, Will Gore, The Independent

Benjamin, 33, is committed to educating people about child adoption. He is a panel Member and Media Advocate for the UK Adoption Service and works energetically to eradicate the many myths that exist around adoption – especially within the LGBT community.

When he started his adoption journey 12-years ago, Benjamin was the youngest gay adopter in the UK. Now, the single Dad has adopted four children all with specific and varying special needs: 10-year-old Jack is autistic with autism-related OCD. Ruby, 7, has Pierre Robin syndrome, scoliosis and limited use of her arms as a result of missing radius bones and is registered blind. Lily, 5, is profoundly deaf and uses British Sign Language (BSL) to communicate. And 3-year-old Joseph, has Down’s syndrome and uses a colostomy bag.

Many adopters start with what Ben calls the ‘Angelina Jolie or Madonna adoption’ — where everything is perfect. However, the reality is that many children over 4 years old, and those with special needs, struggle to be placed with a family because they do not fit that mold. Benjamin shows them photos of his own children and tells his story — the positive and negative — and through educating prospective adopters dispels any notion of “normal.”


Nominated by:  Rita Carpenter