Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Portsmouth couple's joy over surrogacy success

Tracy and Pete Akoun with their daughters Nyobi and Kenya Image copyright Andrew Matthews/ PA Wire
Image caption Tracy and Pete Akoun with their daughters Nyobi (right) and Kenya (left) who were born a month apart to two different surrogate mothers, at home in Portsmouth

A couple conned out of hundreds of pounds as they tried to find a surrogate mother have finally become parents.

Tracy and Pete Akoun had also suffered multiple miscarriages as they tried to conceive a baby.

But now they are celebrating after two daughters arrived within a month of each other, from two different surrogate mothers.

The couple, from Portsmouth, had found the women via social media.

It comes after 47-year-old Mrs Akoun suffered a miscarriage following accidentally falling pregnant not long after meeting her husband.

After several more miscarriages, the couple assessed other options, including surrogacy.

But after creating a profile on a surrogacy website they were duped out of £400 by a woman who conned them into starting the procedure.

Undeterred, Mr and Mrs Akoun joined a Facebook group, through which they found two women, with partners and children of their own.

Mother-of-five Tricia Hunt, 36, and Kate Fruin-Smith, 37, who also has five of her own children, were paid a monthly fee by the couple after becoming pregnant.

Image copyright Andrew Matthews/ PA Wire
Image caption Nyobi (left) was born to Mrs Hunt on June 4 at St Richard's Hospital, Chichester while Kenya (right) was born to Ms Fruin-Smith on July 4 at Rotherham General Hospital, South Yorkshire

Mrs Akoun, an assistant manager in a care home, said they were "ecstatic" after the couple were able to have the "twins" they never had.

Their daughters, Nyobi and Kenya were born within a month of each other in June and July last year.

Mrs Akoun, who has an 18-year-old daughter from a previous relationship, said they keep in touch with the surrogate mothers.

"The relationship is like family and we're still in touch. I don't have any jealousy or insecurity when they're here," she said.

"To both girls, I am their mum."

Image copyright Kate Fruin-Smith/ PA Wire
Image caption Tricia Hunt (left) and Kate Fruin-Smith (right) both have five children of their own and live with their partners but wanted to do something to "give back"

Mrs Hunt and Ms Fruin-Smith, who live in different parts of the UK, both decided to become surrogate mothers as a way of "giving back".

The women had used donor sperm to become pregnant in their separate same-sex relationships and felt they could help other women trying to start a family.

Ms Fruin-Smith said: "We decided that if we were going to accept help, we could help others. It's so rewarding to know you can make that much difference in somebody's life."

Related Topics

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites