Judson Center teams with MDHHS to grant wishes to exceptional adoptive families in November
Farmington Hills, MI – November is National Adoption Month and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has proclaimed Tuesday, November 22 as Adoption Day in the state. The non-profit human services agency Judson Center promotes this observance as a time to bring attention to the tremendous need for adoptive families for children and teens in the foster care system.
According to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), there are an estimated 10,000 children in foster care in the state. Each year, more than 2,000 of these youth are on the waiting list for permanent, loving homes at any given time.
“Children just want to feel loved and wanted,” said Judson Center President and CEO Lenora Hardy-Foster. “They want some stability in their lives. We are consistently working to increase the number of families who will give these children in foster care a forever home if reunification with their biological parents is not possible. Every child deserves a safe and nurturing home. ”
Judson Center’s Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange (MARE) program is a statewide information and referral service for families interested in adopting youth in foster care and for adoption workers looking for homes for these children.
“We are there for the entire adoption journey,” said Michelle Carlton, Judson Center Director of Foster Care and Adoption. “We provide the resources and knowledge to help adoptive parents navigate the process of bringing a child into their home on a permanent basis. Our Adoption Navigators are experienced adoptive parents who offer guidance and personal expertise. Plus, the MARE website provides photos and details on the children in foster care waiting to be adopted.”
National Adoption Month is also a time to celebrate the families who have been created through adoption. MARE and MDHHS have teamed up for “30 Days of Adoption Wishes,” which highlights an exceptional adoptive family each day in November and fulfills a wish for each family. The wishes include items such as movie tickets, gift certificates for dinner, school and art supplies, etc.
“The program is literally 30 wishes for 30 adoptive families in 30 days,” said Judson Center Chief Strategy Officer Khadija Walker-Fobbs. “We want to shine a spotlight on the successes of adoptive families who have opened their hearts and homes to children and provided them with a chance for a brighter future.”
The stories of the 30 adoptive families being recognized are available at: www.mare.org/MI-Adoption-Day.
Participating Michigan courts will observe Adoption Day on November 22nd by finalizing adoptions, holding parties for adoptive families, and educating the public on the adoption process. Michigan Adoption Day is co-sponsored by the Michigan Supreme Court, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange, and the Child Welfare Services Division of the State Court Administrative Office.
The Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange (MARE), a program of Judson Center, is a statewide information and referral service for families interested in adopting youth from foster care and for adoption workers looking for homes for these children. The MARE website provides a list of children in Michigan who are waiting for permanent homes and information on families who are interested in adopting children with special needs. MARE is funded by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. For more information, visit www.mare.org.
About Judson Center
Judson Center, trusted by Michigan families for more than 98 years, is a non-profit human services agency providing expert, comprehensive services that strengthen children, adults and families impacted by abuse and neglect, autism, and developmental, behavioral and physical health challenges so they can achieve whole health, well-being, and maximum potential. Judson Center also offers integrated primary healthcare for all through Judson Center Health in Warren and is a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC). Since opening its doors in 1924, Judson Center has grown to change the lives of nearly 12,000 children, adults, and families each year. Judson Center has offices in Genesee, Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties. Headquarters are located at 30301 Northwestern Highway, Suite 100, Farmington Hills, MI 48334-3277. Learn more at www.judsoncenter.org.
Daphne Hughes, Hughes Creative, LLC
Kelly Kinnear, Judson Center