Sunday, November 2, 2008

National Adoption Month

We've gone purple again, in honor of National Adoption Month!

National Adoption Day is a collective national effort to raise awareness of the 129,000 children in foster care waiting to find permanent, loving families. For the last eight years, National Adoption Day has made the dreams of thousands of children come true by working with courts, judges, attorneys, adoption professionals, child welfare agencies and advocates to finalize adoptions and find permanent, loving homes for children in foster care.

Celebrated in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, more than 300 events are held each year throughout the country to finalize the adoptions of children in foster care, and to celebrate all families who adopt. In total, more than 20,000 children have been adopted from foster care on National Adoption Day. This year, National Adoption Day will be Saturday, November 15, 2008*. {NationalAdoptionDay.org}

I was privileged, myself, to help one of the sponsors of National Adoption Day - the Dave Thomas Foundation and Wendy's Wonderful Kids ~ Heart Gallery. I recently photographed two children who are waiting in foster care, hoping to be adopted. It was a wonderful experience, though also difficult. Both kids were so filled with personality - cute/smart/charming. I wanted to take them both home with me. One of them had the deepest eyes.. eyes that looked as if they have seen much more than they should have seen in his short 10 years. I have a photo of him that truly moves me. This photo gallery will be displayed and moved to different cities within our state - displayed in airport/museums/etc - in the hopes that an interested family will be found for them.

The Dave Thomas Foundation also sponsors A Home for the Holidays ~ which is a television special which is now in its 10th year. I LOVE this show and have seen it every year somehow. I don't think I've ever missed one - I just always happen onto it. The past couple of years I have actually looked and planned for it.. but all other years were just coincidental.
In 2007, the celebrity line-up included Sheryl Crow, James Blunt, Karmina, Carole King, and Reba McEntire. David Krumholtz, comedian George Lopez and René Russo who were among the celebrities that presented inspirational stories of extraordinary families who shared the joys found through foster care adoption.

Anyhow, the show is airing this year on CBS - Tuesday, December 23rd 8-9 pm EST/PST and 7-8 pm CST/MST. If you have never seen this show, you should NOT miss it. It is just such a moving show. I always get teary. {ok i don't watch it with just anyone.. so if i ditch you on the 23rd at that time, it is nothing personal.. haha}

As an adoptive parent of two beautiful, amazing little girls.. I feel a strong drive within myself to help bring together other adoptive families. I don't know when or even if Aj and I will decide to adopt again (not for awhile, I don't think I'm mentally capable of dealing with 3 toddlers/pre-schoolers while my hubby travels for work. We are doing a 'looong pause' at this point of our lives to see how things progress for us as a family. When we adopted Maya, we KNEW we wanted another immediately. We began the adoption applications - mailed in part I - on the same day that we finalized Maya's legal adoption. It was a very happy and exciting day for many reasons.

We won't be rushing into the next process as quickly. Time to take a breather.. pad up the bank accounts a bit more (they've taken quite a pounding between 2 back-to-back int'l adoption processes and then the stock market movements), and carefully consider next steps. We have actually begun talking about other adoption-related ventures that we are both very interested in. We will begin to explore these soon.. and hopefully start taking baby steps in that direction (more in the lines of fund-raising/advocating/education). I'm very excited just thinking about possible options. We are both very entrepreneurial, and we both hold this passion. I think that, working as a team (and utilizing some of the networking we have acquired over the past 4 years), we could come up with something incredible. We have a mission in life, and we are beginning to work our way toward setting it into motion and fulfilling our goals. We hope that, in fulfilling our goals, we are also setting others out on a mission with the same goals.. and that this continues. So much needs to be done to help the innocent children in this world - children who need families/love/support/etc. in order to become their true selves and live full lives.

We love our kids so much.. it is painful to consider all the children who might never feel the love of family. It probably hurts you more when you actually step into an orphanage.. or if you meet with foster kids.. and you see their faces. They don't even need to say anything - it's in the eyes.

Hope.

Here's to Hope ~ that through this month of advocating events in cities, towns, businesses, etc.. many, many, new families are created or grown.

Further information can be found by visiting the following sites: www.davethomasfoundation.org; www.RainbowKids.com; http://adoption.about.com/od/adopting/a/allaboutnam.htm


4 comments:

the need for a father? said...

We may be communicating with the converted here, but please see the link >

http://about-orphans.blogspot.com

Many thanks.

Candice said...

Thanks for advocating for orphans! I am excited for you and your future prospects in that area! I have had the privilage of planning our Adoption Awareness Sunday at our church for the last 3years and have loved it!

Candice

Amy said...

My husband and I also have a desire to be more involved in the adoption arena. If you ever need help way over here in the South - we are here :).

The Labontes said...

Once adoption grabs your heart, there's no letting go. I have no doubt you two will do something amazing. Can't wait to see it.
Kristy