WILKES-BARRE TWP. – The Institute for Human Resources and Services commemorated National Adoption Month on Saturday with a celebration of successful adoptions and encouragement for those considering adoption.
The event took place at Allied Services John Heinz Institute and included refreshments, activities, fun and fellowship for those gathered.
Children especially enjoyed the opportunity to have their faces painted with an array of bright colors.
As we approach Thanksgiving, we are especially thankful for family, Stephanie Kudey, foster care and adoption case manager at the institute, said. Our goal is to give every child the family that everyone deserves.
Brenda Shickora, Tresckow, an adoptive mother, said she felt the need to give back the blessings she received in her own life. She also encouraged those attending to consider adoption.
Adopting Thomas has been wonderful, said Shickora of her 7 year-old. Our lives are filled with a lot of love and laughter.
The event also made it possible for other area organizations to provide information about the adoption process. Representatives from various agencies were available to answer questions from families considering adoption.
Roberta Daniels of the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network said the network works with local agencies to match children with the best families possible.
Our goal is to place children in families with similar interests and activities, so they will truly feel they have found a home, Daniels said.
Jill Bruce, coordinator for the Northeast and Central Adoption Exchange, said more than 800 children in Pennsylvania are waiting to become part of a real family. She emphasized the need to facilitate adoptions so the children can be placed as quickly as possible, with the best results possible.
Sara McDonald, permanency specialist at CONCERN Adoption Services, said the need for good adoptive families has increased in the last several years.
Increasing need has made it even more important to make communities aware of opportunities to adopt, said McDonald.
Agencies participating in the event said extensive training was provided for those in the process of adoption, including preparation for special needs or older children.
Kathy Marino, foster care and adoption specialist at the institute, thinks the organization's motto is especially appropriate for such a day.
‘Adoption is a loving option' captures the spirit of this event and of adoption, Marino said.
Those interested in adoption can contact the Institute for Human Resources and Services at (570) 288-9386. Adoption resources are also available through the State Wide Adoption Network Helpline at 1-800-227-0225.