Boy arrives in UK after Uganda adoption battle

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image copyrightEmilie Larter
image captionAdam's passport application was held up for nine months due to the coronavirus pandemic

A woman who won a legal battle to adopt a boy in Uganda has brought him to the UK for the first time.

Emilie Larter, 29, from Worcestershire, was volunteering for a children's charity in the African country in 2014 when she took care of a baby whose mother had died.

Five years later, after raising thousands through crowdfunding, she was allowed to adopt Adam, now six.

However, she now has to go through the legal process all over again in the UK.

Being in England is "surreal", she said, "but he's loving the attention".

"I keep having to look at Adam and remind myself what we've just been through to get here."

image copyrightEmilie Larter
image captionEmilie Larter and Adam are currently self isolating after arriving from Uganda

Ms Larter, from Leigh Sinton, first held the boy when he was five days old - soon after becoming his sole carer.

For two years she visited Adam while working in a teaching job in the UK, but she moved back to Uganda in 2016 after finding work at an international school.

A crowdfunding appeal to help her adopt him eventually raised £25,000 and in 2019 she won her three-year legal battle.

She successfully applied for a passport and visa after delays due to Covid-19, before arriving back at her parents' home in Worcestershire this month.

image copyrightEmilie Larter
image captionAdam's mother died soon after giving birth and Ms Larter first held him in her arms when he was five days old

"When we were on the plane and he saw land he shouted 'Mummy, look, it's England - I love it'," Ms Larter said.

'Not mum yet'

"I have to readopt him here in the UK.

"He can still go to school, he can still use the healthcare - it's just I'm not recognised as his mum yet here."

The pair are currently living in a "bubble" with her parents, self isolating after arriving from Uganda.

She said the experience was a bit "unreal", adding: "I think he might think that this is what life in England is."

image copyrightEmilie Larter
image captionEmilie Larter is now using crowdfunding to help bring her partner and his family to the UK

Ms Larter's partner remains in Uganda with his family.

"I'll be doing what I can do to get us back together again," she said.

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