Newsroom > DHHS News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 17, 2010

CONTACT:
Jeanne Atkinson, Communications and Legislative Services, (402) 471-8287

Celebrating Adoption, the Greatest Gift November is National Adoption Month

Lincoln – Adoption gives children a family to love and a safe place to call home, and it’s one of the greatest and most generous gifts a person could give. November is Adoption Month, and the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) would like to see every child who is available for adoption get a forever family.

“All children deserve to grow up in good, safe homes,” said Todd Reckling, Director of DHHS’ Division of Children and Family Services. “When a child cannot be returned to his or her original birth family, adoption becomes the goal to give those children families and homes that are theirs forever.”

Currently, there are about 250 children in foster care who are awaiting adoption, looking forward to permanent homes.

“If you’ve thought about and are considering adoption, think about adopting children in foster care,” Reckling said. “By stepping forward and making this life-long commitment, you could really make a difference in a child’s life. There are many parents who already have.”

In 2009, the Department and other partners helped 494 foster care children find permanent homes through adoption. “I’m especially proud of my co-workers at DHHS and the role we play to find permanent, safe homes for the state’s foster children,” said Reckling. The success of these efforts shows in the faces of the children and youth who were adopted.”

On and surrounding National Adoption Day, Nov. 20, DHHS, families, adoption advocates, policymakers, judges, and volunteers across Nebraska will celebrate the joy of adoption with food, festivities and fun. Many courthouses will finalize the adoptions of several foster care children. More than 80 adoptions are scheduled to be finalized in the communities of Lincoln, Grand Island, Hastings and Omaha, alone. (Plans are listed on the Nebraska Judicial Branch website at: http://www.supremecourt.ne.gov/administrative-offices/adoption-day/adoption-day.shtml)  

Earlier this year, DHHS received a $637,726 bonus from the federal Administration for Children and Families for finding permanent adoptive families for children in foster care. Even with the number of adoptions finalized over the years, there is still more work to be done.

Adoptive families are needed now more than ever, especially for siblings, older children, or children with special needs. The typical child who’s eligible for adoption is at least six years old, could be in a group of two or more siblings, and may have special mental or physical needs. If you and your family want to make a difference in the life of a child, call 1-800-7PARENT (1-800-772-7368) to learn more about adoption. Visit DHHS on-line, too, at www.dhhs.ne.gov/children_family_services/Pages/adoption.aspx.

“Adoption is a joyous event for the children and parents alike,” Reckling said. “It adds vast purpose and happiness to a family’s life. Thank you all for your continuing commitment to our children.”

Pictures and information about some of the children looking for adoptive homes can be found at http://www.dhhs.ne.gov/children_family_services/Pages/adoption_children.aspx.

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