Why Not Me? Why Can’t I Have a Family?
Last year, more children were adopted from Texas foster care than ever before – but it wasn’t enough to find a safe and loving new home for every child who needed one.
About 6,500 children in Texas foster care (160 in El Paso County) are waiting to be adopted and two thirds of them (4,119) are not living with someone who plans to adopt them. All these children have suffered abuse or neglect and many ask themselves “Why Not Me? Why can’t I have a family?”
During November, which is National Adoption Awareness Month, the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) and its Children Protective Services program promote adoption with the http://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Adoption_and_Foster_Care/Why_Not_Me/default.asp Why Not Me?” campaign. CPS also teams with many other partners for adoption ceremonies, match parties, and other events, all across the state, to focus attention on the many children waiting for permanent homes and normal lives. Many http://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Adoption_and_Foster_Care/Adoption/events.asp adoption events happen around http://www.nationaladoptionday.org/ National Adoption Day.
In the El Paso area, the following events are scheduled:
El Paso: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., CARE Conference, Professional conference and recruitment of new foster/adoptive parents, 11670 Chito Samaniego. Contact: Ruth Fierro, 915-834-8216 ext. 3 or Norma Peru, 915-546-8160.
El Paso: 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., Adoption of 18 children, 65th Judicial District Court, 500 E. San Antonio, 11th floor. Contact: Honorable Yahara Lisa Gutierrez, 915-546-2102.
“My greatest privilege as a judge was finalizing adoptions,” said DFPS Commissioner John Specia. “I will never forget the joy and hope on the faces of those children. No child should have to grow up in foster care, and we cannot rest because the need for adoptive families is greater than ever.”
“Our biggest need is for families who will adopt older children, siblings, and children of color,” said Audrey Deckinga, DFPS assistant commissioner for Child Protective Services. “We know that children do better when they have families and they don’t outgrow the need for parents when they become teens.”
Texas needs foster and adoptive parents for children of all ages and some of these children have special medical, physical, or emotional needs.
Please watch and share the Why Not Me http://www.youtube.com/TexasDFPS#p/u/5/10YXNM8RRvw public service announcements on the DFPS You Tube channel and see the children who are waiting at AdoptChildren.org. This award-winning website makes it easier for people to find and learn about children and teens who may be a good fit for their families and get started on the adoption process.
Adoption by the Numbers
5, 328 – The number children adopted from DFPS last year (September 1, 2012- August 31, 2013) 85 in the El Paso area
6.5% – The increase in adoptions from DFPS last year.
6,511 – The number of children in the state care who were legally available for adoption as of September 30, 2013. 162 in the El Paso area
6,496 – The number of children available for adoption at the same time last year.
4,119 -The number of children available for adoption who were not living with a prospective adoptive parent as of September 30, 2013. Of those:
49% were older children and teens (ages 10-17)
29% were siblings
25.5 % were African American
44.6% were Hispanic
25.5% were White