CONTACT: Barbara Fornasiero, EAFocus Communications; email@example.com; 248.260.8466; Betsy Reich, Judson Center; Betsy_Reich@judsoncenter.org; 248.837.2019; Michelle Parra, MARE, Michelle_Parra@judsoncenter.org; 734.528.2038
Ann Arbor, Mich. —October 30, 2019— The Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange (MARE), a program of the multi-county human service agency Judson Center, and funded by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, is preparing to celebrate November as National Adoption Month by raising awareness of the number of children waiting to be adopted, educating prospective families on the adoption process and sharing the joy of forever family experiences.
Throughout November, the Michigan Supreme Court and family courts, as well as various public and private agencies around the state, help celebrate the families who have been created through foster care adoption. The culmination of the month’s activities is Michigan Adoption Day, Tuesday, November 26, 2019, a statewide celebration of foster children uniting with their “forever families.”
“National Adoption Month, and especially Michigan Adoption Day, mark the hope and joy that so many foster children and adoptive families experience when they legally unite,” MARE Program Manager Michelle Parra, LMSW, said. “It also helps bring attention to the fact that there are more than 13,000 youth in the foster care system. Of those, approximately 330 children do not have an identified adoptive family.”
Those children include Tatiana, a 14-year-old with a big heart and big dreams about her future. “I like helping kids and older people, so I’ll probably be a social worker or a nurse,” says Tatiana, who loves to explore and wants to do the same with her future forever family.
There are other youth such as Bruce, 15, who longs for a family so much that he thinks about it daily. “Every day when I go to sleep,” says Bruce, “I’m wondering, ‘will I get adopted tomorrow?’ I really want to be adopted, and I hope I have a really good family.”
Parra also notes that an important part of National Adoption Month is honoring outstanding adoptive families.
“Throughout the month of November, we honor 30 families who have adopted a child or children through Michigan’s foster care system; we feature one family each day on our Facebook page and website,” Parra said. “You can see their family photos and read their stories. In addition to sharing these wonderful families with you, we are granting a wish to each family during celebrations in November.”
Follow MARE each day in November at www.mare.org/MI-Adoption-Day and on social media for features about waiting youth, stories about exceptional adoptive families, updates about courthouse celebrations, and more. Hashtags are #adoption, #fostercare, and #adoptMIkids. For more information, call (800) 589-MARE.
Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange, a program of Judson Center and funded by the Michigan Department of Human Services, is an information and referral service for prospective adoptive parents interested in adopting children from foster care and for adoption workers looking for homes for these children. The MARE website, www.mare.org, includes biographies of children who are available for adoption and lists additional events occurring throughout the state in the upcoming year.
About Judson Center
Judson Center, trusted by Michigan families for 95 years, is a non-profit human service agency providing comprehensive services to strengthen children, adults and families impacted by abuse and neglect, autism, developmental disabilities, and behavioral health challenges. Primary care is also offered through the Judson Center Family Health Clinic. Since opening its doors in 1924, Judson Center has grown to change the lives of over 10,000 children, adults, and families each year. Judson Center has five regional offices in Genesee, Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties. Headquarters are located at 30301 Northwestern Highway, Suite 100, Farmington Hills, MI 48334-3277. Learn more at https://www.judsoncenter.org/.