Jennifer Anchors: Celebrate, remember on National Adoption Month
Published: Friday, November 16, 2012 at 6:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, November 15, 2012 at 3:00 p.m.
As the proud mother of two beautiful daughters, I count my blessings every day. There is no greater joy, no greater fulfillment than to watch my girls flourish in a home filled with love and encouragement. If you’re a parent, you know just what I mean. I imagine we’ll share similar words of gratitude around the dinner table this Thanksgiving, offering thanks for our precious children.
I’ll also be giving thanks for the 163 children in our Mid-Florida region who will celebrate their first Turkey Day together with their “forever family,” passing the potatoes and carving the bird with mothers, fathers, siblings, aunts and/or grandparents, finally having a loving place to call “home.” For these children, this past year has been life-changing. This past year, they were adopted.
Our local children join more than 3,000 others from across Florida who found families through adoption last year, and it’s a privilege to celebrate each one as our country recognizes November as National Adoption Month.
This month is especially meaningful to Children’s Home Society of Florida. Not only do we honor the 39,000 children we’ve found loving adoptive families for since our inception, but we also celebrate our 110th birthday; 110 years of helping children in need.
Yet, while we rejoice in the tens of thousands of families we’ve brought together, we must also remember the hundreds of children and teens who still long for someone to call “mom” or “dad.” These children, many of whom have endured traumatic beginnings, languish in uncertainty. Though they struggle to heal from past pain and abandonment, they still hold on to hope...hope that this year might be the year someone wants to bring them home forever...hope that this year, they’ll find the love and stability only a family can provide.
Many of our local children and teens are featured in the Heart Gallery of Mid-Florida, opening their hearts just enough to allow the community to glimpse inside...hoping they might capture the hearts of others ready to accept them as they are, ready to embrace them, ready to welcome them into their families forever.
While I give thanks for my family, I will remember the children who so desperately want to celebrate the holidays with a family of their own. And I will give thanks for these children, too, because they, too, are tremendous blessings.
Jennifer Anchors is Executive Director of Children’s Home Society of Florida, serving children and families in the 18-county Mid-Florida region.
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