Mayor and DCHS Recognize National Adoption Month, Celebrate Alexandria Adoptions
A DCHS CONNECT FEATURE
November 20, 2020--In recognition of National Adoption Month and National Adoption Day, November 21, Mayor Justin M. Wilson and the Department of Community and Human Services are drawing attention to the importance of adoption and celebrating the 14 children and youth who have found their forever families in Alexandria this year.
The children, ranging in age from 2 to 17 years old, were adopted by nine families. Eight children were adopted by their foster parents and six were adopted by family members, including the adoption of four sisters by a close relative and a set of twins.
Mayor Wilson issued a proclamation recognizing November as National Adoption Month and November 21 as “Adoption Saturday in Alexandria” and acknowledging the valuable contributions of DCHS and the Alexandria Circuit Court, Model Court Project, CASA Program and Sheriff’s Office in making the adoptions possible.
Throughout Virginia, 858 children were adopted this past year.
Approximately 424,000 children nationally, 5,374 children in Virginia, and 107 children in Alexandria are in foster care. Foster parents, or resource families, help support families in a time of crisis by providing a safe and nurturing environment for children in foster care. They work with the children’s social workers, teachers, doctors, birth families and counselors with the goal of returning children to their homes.
When returning to the home is not an option, children in foster care become eligible for adoption. More than 122,000 children nationally and 700 in Virginia are waiting to be adopted. Teens in foster care are at risk for aging out of foster care without permanent family connections. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services AFCARS Report, approximately one in five children waiting to be adopted are teens, but only five percent of all children adopted in 2019 were 15-18 years old.
For those interested in adopting or becoming a resource parent, contact Chrissy Levine at 703.746.5858 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Levine will explain the process and provide information on approval considerations and training. Visit alexandriava.gov/Adoption to learn more.
Residents can support children in foster care by donating to the Fund for Alexandria’s Child, which raises funds to directly benefit children in foster care to help ensure each child has their basic needs met and provides life-enhancing and enriching opportunities. Learn more at alexandriava.gov/TheFundforAlexChild.