On Friday, November 10, SaintA celebrated Milwaukee Adoption Day, along with Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin Community Services, Division of Milwaukee Child Protective Services, Coalition for Children Youth and Families, and the District Attorney’s Office.
The Honorable Judge M. Joseph Donald led a 30-minute program addressing the 19 adoptive and extended families, case managers and others who were present. One Milwaukee family was there celebrating the sixth anniversary of the adoption of their son. “We adopted him six years ago when he was just six months old,” said the father. “Our adoption day just happened to fall on Milwaukee Adoption Day, so we bring him back here each year to remember when we become a family.”
A Day to Celebrate Relationship
“Relationships are key in the trauma informed care of our children,” said SaintA Executive Vice President, Ann Leinfelder Grove. “Those safe and caring relationships are evident here today.”
Oriana Carey, CEO of the Coalition for Children Youth and Families, echoed those sentiments, adding, “What our kids really need is to be loved no matter what.”
During his remarks, Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm said he had recently seen a TED Talk entitled, “Lessons from the longest study on human development,” presented by British science journalist Helen Pearson.
He recommended the 12-minute video where Pearson walks parents through a study of 70,000 babies and children, acknowledges most of parenting is just trying to get it right, and provides some useful insights.
Kinship Care to Foster Care to Adoption
Six SaintA children got their forever homes on Adoption Day, with several other adoptions slated throughout National Adoption Month.
Zachary (Zach), age 12, was one of the children who was adopted on Nov. 10. His new forever-mom, Korrie – who also happens to be his aunt – says the day was years in the making.
“At first, I provided kinship care and as time went on, I had the opportunity to become his licensed foster parent,” explained Korrie. “And now, Zach has the permanency we all want for him.” She went on to say that from the time Zach was born, she knew she would always be there for him; she just didn’t know to what extent.
His birth mom and dad are both still involved in his life as are many other family members – both biological and through relationship. Present for his adoption day were “grandma and grandpa,” who are actually Korrie’s boyfriend’s parents.
“As they say, ‘it takes a village,’ and that’s what we have,” Korrie said.
Foster to Adopt
What’s unique about each of the Milwaukee Adoption Day families is that they all started out with foster parent licenses before they became adoptive parents. With time, and as cases progress, about a quarter of the children in the child welfare system become available for adoption (the rest go back home, which is known as reunification).
To learn more about becoming a foster parent, visit GrowHope.net.