Friday, July 31, 2015

TGIF - Adopt Us Kids

We have had a recent change in our household that has brought a rather new (new to us, anyway) issue into the spotlight. We have made our family a little larger by opening our home to someone who needed one, and we are learning firsthand that this is a remarkably complicated process. Not that we’ve never thought about it before, but we’ve never looked at it in detail, and there are quite a few details. Many of the surrounding details do touch on the various other subjects I write about, though, and I thought it was definitely worth a spotlight here.

The U.S. Children’s Bureau, in cooperation with the Adoption Exchange Association, launched Adopt Us Kids in 2002 with the goals of raising public awareness of the needs of and for adoptive and foster families, and to support States, Territories, and Tribes in their efforts to find families for children in foster care. Like last week’s spotlight on stopbullying.org, the specifics of adoption and foster care vary (and often vary greatly) from place to place, so it is difficult for someone like me, with a national and even international audience, to go too deeply into details, but it should come as no surprise that there are many young lives out there in need of a helping hand, and adoptuskids.org acts as a great facilitator between across those many places for those many kids.

According to current estimates, there are about 102,000 children and youths in the U.S. foster care system. It is safe to say that none of those children wanted to be in the foster care system. They want to be at home with a family that cares the way most of us take for granted that a family will care. That isn’t always an option, though. For one reason or another, approximately 102,000 children in this country are not taking that for granted right now. Not everyone is able to help, and only you know what you can do, but if you can help, You can bet that it would be appreciated.

In our case, we already knew the youth in question, and we knew a good bit about the situation before it got to this point. We’re lucky in that respect. We got a head start. Now we plan to put that head start to good use and give someone the best new home we can give. If you think you might be able to do the same, give adoptuskids.org, or your own local adoption or foster agency, a visit. Someone is sure to say Thank you.

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