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Adoption Blog: Talk to AF

A Perfect Storm Impacts Foster Children Every Day in the United States
Filed Under: Foster Adoption



November is National Adoption Awareness Month. While we celebrate all families formed through adoption during this month, the focus is on helping the more than 100,000 children in the U.S. foster system find permanent homes. On National Adoption Day, which falls on Saturday, November 17 this year, courts across the country will remain open to finalize the adoptions of children from foster care. In honor of this special day and month, we are pleased to present this guest post by an adoptive parent and the husband of a former foster child.

A Perfect Storm Impacts Foster Children Every Day in the United States
by Chris Dunne, adoptive parent and National Adoption Day family spokesperson
 
Over the past two weeks I've watched the coverage and devastation from Hurricane Sandy and seen all the people who have lost their homes. My heart goes out to those impacted by the storm, yet I can't help but think how lucky these people really are and they don't even realize it. They have their families and will have a chance to rebuild. They have the whole country watching and wanting to help, as well they should. That is not the case with kids in foster care.
 
They have also lost their homes, but, worse than that, they have lost their families. As with those affected by the storm, it was not their choice or their fault. But they do not have a mom or dad to tell them everything will be OK, they do not have an entire country wanting to help them. They sit in a very grim and lonely place and they wait, and they wait, and they wait. They wait for someone to come and help them. They wait for a sign of hope that someone out there cares. They wait for someone to tell them that everything will be OK. In some cases, they wait for something that will never come and they "age out" of the system without a permanent family.
 
On Saturday, November 17, judges and child advocates join together across the country for National Adoption Day. On this day, communities across the country finalize thousands of adoptions, celebrate adoptive families, and raise awareness about the more than 100,000 children and teens in foster care who need a permanent and loving family.
 
Once a foster child herself, my wife and I officially adopted four brothers from foster care on National Adoption Day in 2011. This was after we had raised two girls and sent them off to college. The boys had been in and out of dozens of foster homes and were separated from each other. It's so sad that there even has to be a National Adoption Day, but you can make a difference. Become a foster parent and adopt a child.
 
My family is proud to support National Adoption Day. Their One Day Project was created to give hope to children waiting in foster care and to encourage others to adopt. Watch the videos submitted by a former foster youth and a social worker as they share what National Adoption Day means to them. Do you have a story to share? Submit a video and share why you support National Adoption Day. It doesn't need to be anything fancy (no longer than one minute) – and videos created on cell phones or laptops are fine.
 
As a father now of six children, I am so blessed! It was an amazing feeling being in that Florida courtroom, one year ago, with our four boys sitting between us and finally joining a family. We changed their lives and they changed ours.


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2 Comments

Thank you for this post—we too have adopted older children from foster care (7-year-old twins and two 15/17-year-old brothers) and we are having the time of our lives.  People always say, “Oh, those boys are so lucky!”, but we are the lucky ones.  It is truly a shame that our society gives so much lip service to how much love children, yet the sad truth is that thousands of children languish in foster care and will never know the love and security of a permanent home; those who “age out” face very grim futures, often including incarceration, drug addiction and homelessness.  I wish more people would consider “growing” their family this way.  We are having such a good time that we are updating our home study so that we can adopt for a third time.

By Buddha Lady on Monday, November 19, 2012 at 10:35 pm.

Hi,

One of our sons called this morning to wish us a Happy Thanksgiving. He was our “problem” child, the youngest of seven, adopted at the age of seven years. I can’t imagine where the time has flown! He’s almost 33 now and his siblings are all grown up, too.

When we first adopted, there was no Internet, so I am amazed at the wealth of information and experiences that are discussed in blogs and on forums.

I’m a children’s author, and my most recent novel (for ages 11 and up) concerns two siblings who have been adopted but are still dealing with their past. Since this is Adoption Month, I’m giving away e-books to interested people who are touched by adoption.

Here’s the URL for a book trailer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uimzgjp5QvE

If you’d like a free e-book, go to the site below to get contact information.

Thanks!
Sheila
http://www.scbwi-illinois.org/Welch

By Sheilanne on Thursday, November 22, 2012 at 12:03 am.

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