Friday, November 27, 2015
November is National Adoption Month!  Adoption is very important to me.  When I was 8 years old, my mother remarried and my step-father signed documents to make me his daughter legally.  This adoption was one of the best things that happened to me because I learned that a person can take full responsibility for a child and love them unconditionally whether or not they're of the same genetic makeup.  People like this are one of a kind and this month highlights how thankful we are for them, as well as all the work involved to care for displaced children in the US.
There are 415,000 children in the U.S. foster care system and 108,000 are waiting to be adopted. AdoptUSKids maintains a national photo listing service for children waiting to be adopted. Since the project launched in 2002, more than 25,000 children who were once photo listed on adoptuskids.org have been adopted and nearly 38,000 families have registered to adopt through the website. Nevertheless, older youth are disproportionately represented – approximately 41 percent of children and youth photo listed on adoptuskids.org are between 15 and 18 years old, but only 17 percent of those adopted have been in this age group.

   Older youth and teens have lower adoption rates than younger children, and they often wait longer to be adopted. But no matter their age, all kids need a supportive, loving home and the teenage years are a critical period for growth. The new TV PSAs, which were created for the campaign probono, portray a dad giving advice to his teenage daughter after her first breakup, and a mom giving her son a haircut at home. The humorous, lighthearted scenarios aim to overcome fears adoptive parents may have regarding their own imperfections. The PSAs end with the tagline, “You don’t have to be perfect to be a perfect parent,” reassuring prospective parents that even if they are not ‘perfect’, they have the ability to provide the stability and security that older youth in foster care need and deserve. 
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, AdoptUSKids, and the Ad Council are asking for your help in spreading the word about a new PSA campaign that encourages prospective parents to adopt older youth from foster care. The theme for National Adoption Month is, "We Never Outgrow the Need for Family." That's because older children and youth still have many big milestones in their life they need a family for.
Take a look at the following videos!

Some Misperceptions about Adoption from Foster Care: 
 Adoption is expensive. Unlike the private adoption of an infant or adopting internationally, there are virtually no costs associated with adoption from the US child welfare system. In addition, the vast majority of youth adopted from foster care are also eligible for monthly adoption assistance up to the level of the foster care rate.
You have to be married. You do not have to be married to adopt in most states. Many children have been very successfully adopted by single parents. Single-parent families accounted for 29 percent of all adoptions from foster care in 2014 (AFCARS).
You have to have a college degree. Having a high school diploma or college education is not required. What is important is that you are stable, flexible, and compassionate, and that you have a good sense of humor. Most importantly, you must have the support and commitment to raise a child and to be there for him throughout his life.
You have to own a home and each child has to have their own room. You can rent your home or live in an apartment or a mobile home so long as your living situation is a stable one.
You have to be of child-bearing age to adopt. Experienced parents and empty-nesters are encouraged to adopt. In most instances, you’re eligible to adopt regardless of age, income, marital status or sexual orientation.
You can only adopt a child who is the same race and ethnicity as you. Federal law prohibits the delay or denial of an adoptive placement based on the race or ethnicity of a child in U.S. foster care and the prospective parent or parents who are seeking to adopt them. The only exception to this law is the adoption of Native American children where special considerations apply.
You can’t adopt if you’re in the military. Military families stationed overseas and within the U.S. are eligible to adopt children from the U.S. foster care system.
You can call 1-888-200-4005 (English) or 1-877-236-7831 (Spanish) to receive the latest information about the foster care system and the adoption process. Please take a moment to support AdoptUSKids on Facebook and FOLLOW on Twitter.
This is a sponsored post. Latched On Mom was compensated in exchange for sharing information regarding this event. All thoughts and experiences expressed are of my own. For more information please see my full disclosure.  

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