Health and Family Services Cabinet
Governor Proclaims November Adoption Awareness Month; Almost 800 children await adoptive homes
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 6, 2009) – Governor Steve Beshear has proclaimed November Adoption Awareness Month in Kentucky and is reminding Kentuckians to consider opening their hearts and home to the state’s almost 800 waiting children.
Gov. Beshear said every child deserves a family.
“Adoptive families provide support, nurturing and permanency to these waiting children who need safe, caring and stable homes,” said Gov. Beshear. “We are grateful for these adoptive families who selflessly share their lives and homes with Kentucky children in need.”
The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ (CHFS) Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) is responsible for the state’s child protection efforts, including foster care and adoption.
CHFS Secretary Janie Miller said the state’s success in the area of adoption requires strong effective partnerships between adoptive parents, the state and local communities.
“Many children in Kentucky have been placed in safe, loving homes through the adoption process,” she said. “We could not achieve permanency if not for the collaborations among state agencies, our community stakeholders and the many loving families of the Commonwealth.”
More than 85 percent of all state adoptions are by families who first serve as foster parents, said Mike Grimes, manager of DCBS’ adoption services branch. Through their 10-week training, families are simultaneously certified to foster and adopt.
“Families who decide to adopt do so after much consideration,” Grimes said. “We have high regard for that level of commitment. We want families to know there is always a helping hand or a listening ear available every step of the way through the process.”
The need for adoptive parents grows annually, Grimes said.
Of the more than 6,900 children in state out-of-home care, more than 1,800 children have the goal of adoption. Almost 800 children have had their parental rights terminated, which means they have no identified family available to care for them and are awaiting adoption.
Families who are interested in adoption are encouraged to let caseworkers know about the kinds of special needs they can be prepared to handle and if they are interested in caring for one or more than one child. Grimes said it can sometimes be challenging to find a permanent home for sibling groups or children with special needs.
For more information about adoption and foster care, call the Special Needs Adoption Program (SNAP) at (800) 928-4303. Log on to the SNAP home page at http://chfs.ky.gov/snap.
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