MUNCIE, Ind. (Nov. 15, 2013)—November is National Adoption Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness about the adoption of children and youth from foster care. For the second year, Delaware County has set aside a special day in November to celebrate and honor families who adopt. This year Friday, Nov. 22 has been designated ‘adoption day’ and the Delaware County Department of Child Services (DCS), the Delaware County Circuit Court, Adoption Connections, Inc., Delaware County Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) the Children’s Bureau and adoption attorney Rebecca Bruce are collaborating to celebrate the dreams of several foster children coming true.
“It’s no coincidence that National Adoption Awareness Month is positioned in the month of November when Americans celebrate a time of thanksgiving,” said Steven Cox, regional manager for the Delaware County DCS office. “It gives us policymakers, practitioners and advocates a chance to say ‘thanks’ to the many adoptive mothers and fathers that help their children thrive by encouraging them to aim high, work hard and make good choices that will lead to healthy and satisfying lives.”
Circuit Court Judges Marianne Vorhees and John Feick will preside over an estimated 18 adoptions—15 of them foster care children from Delaware and surrounding counties—scheduled to be finalized on Nov. 22. Adoption ceremonies will begin at 1:30 pm in Circuit Courts 1 and 4 at the Delaware County Circuit Courthouse.
"I feel privileged to join in the celebration of adoption and to be a part of making 'forever families,'” said Judge Feick. “We always try to make the ceremony special for each family, and I am looking forward to participating in the extra special celebration of National Adoption Day."
The new adoptive families will enjoy light refreshments after their ceremonies, compliments of CASA. The adopted children, and their new siblings, will receive special gifts, courtesy of the Children’s Bureau, which also is providing decorations for the celebration. In addition, photographs of the happy occasion will be made available for the families.
Anyone interested in learning more about foster care adoptions may speak with an adoption champion from the Children’s Bureau.
While special attention is given to adoptions each year during November, DCS and its partners work year-round to find permanent homes for kids. To help build awareness about adoptable foster children continuously throughout the year, DCS developed a compelling portraits display of children in need of adoptive families. The exhibit, called the Indiana Heart Gallery, travels to over 50 venues around the state each year.
In addition, an online picture book with photos and short bios of adoptable kids is available (see http://www.in.gov/dcs/2737.htm). To provide support for parents that adopt a foster child, DCS and its partners offer post-adoptive services including referrals, therapy, crisis intervention, support groups and mentoring.
Children who stay in child welfare systems for long periods of time, or leave state care without a permanent family, can have difficulty adjusting to adulthood. Many end up homeless, incarcerated or with unplanned babies.
To be eligible to adopt a child from the foster care system, you do not have to be rich, own your own house or even be married. You only need space in your heart to provide love for a child. Though waiting kids come from a variety of backgrounds— some are part of a sibling group, many are older children or adolescents and some have physical or mental disabilities—DCS and its partners are committed to proving there is no such thing as an un-adoptable child.
Top 5 Reasons to Consider Adopting a Foster Child:
#5 – Patience and a sense of humor are two of your greatest strengths.
#4 – You have a heart that is bigger than your home.
#3 – You know how important it is to be part of a family.
#2 – You believe every kid counts.
And the #1 reason to consider adopting a foster child: Today there are nearly 100 foster children in Indiana waiting for permanent homes.
For more information about adopting a foster child, call 1-888-25ADOPT.
Delaware County Circuit Court is located at 100 West Washington Street in Muncie.
About Indiana Department of Child Services:
DCS is committed to protecting children who are victims of abuse or neglect. The agency's primary goal is to safely keep these children at home with their families by offering appropriate support services. It also manages the child support bureau. Indiana Child Abuse/Neglect Hotline: 800.800.5556. www.in.gov/dcs