Welfare Watch November 7, 2018
November is National Adoption Month
Christmas this year will carry an additional celebration for my niece and her family. They have two older children, a son and a daughter, who are thrilled to welcome a new baby sister into the family. Their newly adopted sister will celebrate Christmas for the first time this year with her loving family. My niece carried a place in her heart for a third child, which was fulfilled when this special baby came into their lives. The adoption was finalized last month.
The children who come into our lives, by natural or “supernatural” means, often become a greater blessing to us than we ever imagined.
Older children in foster care, particularly teenagers, are adopted from foster care less frequently than younger children. Of the estimated 437,000 youth in the U.S. foster care system, 118,000 youth are currently waiting for adoptive families. According to the Georgia Division of Family and Children Services, there are approximately 1400 children in foster care who are at risk of aging out of care without fundamental emotional, legal, and/or financial support. [source: FosterGA]
It is never too late to experience a first Thanksgiving, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Christmas, or New Year with a child who is seeking a permanent home. Even, and perhaps especially, at the age of 18, youth long to become part of a permanent, caring family.
Jerry Milner, the Associate Commissioner of the Children’s Bureau recalls working with older teens in the foster care system. “Many of these young people are experiencing foster care through no fault of their own, and I believe we must do a better job of highlighting the importance a forever family has on these older youths’ wellbeing and the impact it plays on their transition to adulthood. Even with our stronger focus on primary prevention, we know that there will still be a need for foster care and furthermore, some of those young people becoming eligible for adoption. I am excited to see and proud to be a proponent of this greater focus on the need to adopt older teens from foster care. We know family, by any definition, is the best resource we have to create an environment for young people to be safe, healthy, and ultimately thrive.” [source: AdoptUSKids]
If you have an inkling that your family is not yet complete, perhaps it’s time to consider a child who would love to call you “mom” or “dad”. A child is waiting for a place to call home.
For more information about adoption in Georgia link to Georgia Association of Licensed Adoption Agencies at https://www.georgiaadoption.org/.
SAVE THE DATES
2019 Together Georgia Day at the Capitol January 31, 2019
2019 Georgia Conference on Children and Families October 28-30, 2019
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