"November is National Adoption Month" states Carrie Keiser, Director for the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network. SWAN wants to get this message out.
"In any given day in Pennsylvania there are about 14 thousand youth in the foster care system. And we know about 25 hundred of them have the goal of adoption. Most of them have found families but we are still recruiting for about a thousand youth that still need a permanent connection. Most of our children that have a goal of adoption that seem to be waiting the longest are 10 and older and we are focused on them" said Keiser. So focused, a new campaign puts the spotlight on older children. It's called "Hashtag Meet The Kids."
"We are actually featuring foster youth from our system in our campaign and 5 of them have found a permanent connection" said Keiser. You can get a behind the scenes look at the 13 minute documentary at Adoptpakids.org.
"It's so important you're hearing right from them and it's dispelling those myths that exist. About why children are in care and our older youth are just like any youth and they are looking for a family to go to during the holidays to have for their children, whenever they get married they are just looking for that support and love" said Keiser.
All types of families are needed, foster and adoptive. The state provides services to youth and those looking to adopt. Those services include the family profile, that walks you through the background checks the history, the type of youth you are looking for and also matching services," said Keiser.
Since SWAN started in 1992, it's had more than thirty five thousand adoptions and Kaiser urges you to visit adoptpakids.org "to look at the information on that website and look at the youth read their profiles read the stories of what they are looking for and what they love to do interest and make the call," said Keiser. We checked out the website and found our Val's Kid Daymara.
The 16-year-old is a bright and active young lady who loves school and earns above average grades. She looks forward to attending college and wants to study pediatric medicine. This young lady is open to new adventures and is willing to try most things at least once. She would enjoy continued contact with her extended family. For more information on this week's Val's Kid call the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network at 1-800-585-7926 or go to our website abc27.com and look for a link. With this week's Val's Kid, I'm Valerie Pritchett.