National Adoption Day – raises awareness

Richland College is working to raise awareness about foster care and adoption. In a districtwide event held in November, students had the opportunity to learn about adoption, foster care and the numerous organizations and sponsors that work to help children across the country.

National Adoption Day (Nov. 19) reflects the efforts of a coalition of national organizations. According to its website, more than 100,000 children in the U.S. are waiting for foster care. The average wait time is approximately three years.

National Adoption Day has helped more than 58,000 children move from foster care to forever homes since its inception in 2000. More than 23,000 children age out of the foster care system every year with no permanent home. Carol Castillo is program service coordinator for Richland and was recently named Foster Care Champion by the Dallas County Community College District

“Some of them may never get a chance to be adopted, they go from foster care to foster care,” said Castillo. “Imagine not having a place you call home or people you say that this is my family.”

Castillo is the main campus contact for students in foster care and those who have been adopted. She hopes the event will bring awareness to the issue and encourage people to consider adoption so the children will have a place to call home.

Castillo said students in foster care are eligible to receive financial aid, tuition assistance and fee tax exemptions if they fill out the appropriate forms. She adds that this will not be the last time students can get one-on-one information about the issue. The month of May is Foster Care Awareness Month.

More information about National Adoption Day is available online at www.NationalAdoptionDay.org.