National Adoption Awareness Month
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The Children’s Bureau recognizes November as National Adoption Month. Throughout the month, providers, communities, and families are encouraged to focus on the need for adoptive families for children, youth, and teens in the US foster care system. The Children’s Bureau and EVOLVE Family Services are committed to emphasizing the importance and value of youth engagement.
This year, the Children’s Bureau is targeting the importance of adoption for teens. Data shows teens in foster care wait longer for permanency and are at higher risk of aging out of the system compared to younger children. Solidifying permanent connections for these teens is an integral part of determining their future achievement, health, and overall well-being. The 2023 National Adoption Month theme is, “Empowering Youth: Finding Points of connection.” EVOLVE is committed to highlighting and advocating for the importance of providing opportunities, connections, and resources that connect youth to their background, while simultaneously fostering meaningful permanent relationships. EVOLVE knows when youth have the opportunity to connect to their roots and background, they are able to build a strong personal identity.
Approximately 114,000 children and youth across the nation are waiting to be adopted and who are at risk of aging out of foster care. At a local level, there are 1,818 children waiting for permanency in Minnesota and 1,391 children waiting for permanency in Wisconsin.
There is increased difficulty in developing connections when youth are separated from their birth families and birth culture. Without access to or knowledge of their history, many teens transition out of foster care feeling separated from their roots. This can lead to wondering, “Who am I?”. EVOLVE values taking a child-centered approach to all aspects of our work. EVOLVE does this by elevating the voice of the youth we work alongside, while also preparing the families we serve with tools and education to help them support the children and youth they are adopting. EVOLVE is also committed to engaging in legislative work at a state level to improve the experience of children and youth in foster care.
Adoption Awareness is not just for November, throughout the year, we will share data and facts with you, as well as share resources and opportunities for you to engage with. Much of this is done through our social media channels, blog and newsletters. You can follow us on Facebook and Instagram and sign up for our newsletter to stay informed.
If you are interested in getting involved or adopting a child through foster care, please sign up for one of our Foster to Adopt Minnesota Adoption Permanency Program informational sessions.
There is much work to be done but EVOLVE Family Services and our current families are committed to providing positive, supportive, and nurturing experiences to the children and youth we serve.