Children are not often part of the audience for a regular meeting of the Board of El Paso County Commissioners, but on Tuesday several young children attended with their families as the Commissioners unanimously approved a Proclamation recognizing November as National Adoption Month, honoring local adoptive families and organizations supporting adoption and foster homes.
“The El Paso County Department of Human Services, with its many private, community based and non-profit partners, plays a vital role in maintaining and increasing citizen involvement in adoption so that waiting children can find stable and permanent homes,” said Commissioner President Pro Tem Mark Waller as he read the Proclamation into the record. “It is with great thanks that we recognize all El Paso County adoptive parents and the many dedicated adoption professionals who work to connect foster children with loving families.”
National Adoption Month was established by President Gerald Ford in 1990 as a collective national effort to raise awareness. Through the efforts of the El Paso County Department of Human Services (DHS) and community partners, 469 adoptions have been completed for children in foster care or kinship care over the last five years. Of those, 217 were kin or kin-like adoptions.
“It is clear that you have a love for children” said Commissioner Stan VanderWerf as he thanked adoptive parents and DHS staff for their part in the process. “Thank you for opening your homes to these children.”
In the past five years, El Paso County completed 146 adoptions for youth age 10 or older. There is currently an active search for adoptive families for 15 El Paso County children. So far this year, 75 adoptions have been completed in El Paso County.
“El Paso County works with 13 Child Placement Agencies,” said Julie Krow, El Paso County Department of Human Services executive director. “Many of those same CPAs help those families who eventually adopt.”
Alyssa McClurg and her husband adopted two children this past summer. “We have had a phenomenal experience,” she said. “There’s no such thing as other peoples’ children.” She praised the work of CPAs for their work with families.
“Thank you so much for your sacrifice and service,” said Commissioner Peggy Littleton.
More information about how to adopt or foster children in El Paso County is online at http://dhs.elpasoco.com/Pages/AdoptionUnit.aspx.
“We will never to anything more important than raising kids,” Waller said. “The way to have successful kids is to have parents who love them.”
Contact: Kristina Iodice
DHS Public Information Officer
Phone: 444-5533 Cell: 235-8478