The adoptions of 22 children in care will be finalized and celebrated.
Philadelphia--In recognition of National Adoption Month, the adoptions of 22 foster children will be finalized in Family Court on Friday, November 13th. Following the adoption proceedings, The Department of Human Services (DHS) and Family Court will sponsor a celebration with food and entertainment for these special families and children as they begin their new lives together.“Children in foster care are often referred to as ‘children in waiting,’ because they are waiting for what every child deserves--a permanent and loving home,” said DHS Commissioner Anne Marie Ambrose. “At DHS, helping youth in placement achieve timely permanency is one of our top priorities. I am thrilled that for these children, and many others who have been helped by our dedicated staff and provider agencies, the wait is over.”
According to Ambrose, in 2003, the Department stepped up its efforts to help children achieve timely permanency by initiating Performance Based Contracting (PBC), which rewards foster care agencies for helping youth achieve permanency. To support this initiative, DHS increased its data collection efforts, streamlined the referral process and clarified the roles and responsibilities of DHS and provider case workers. These efforts have resulted in more timely permanency for youth.
Recent data indicate that record numbers of children have moved to permanency in the past two years. In fact adoptions have increased almost 25 percent since last year and permanencies for children in both foster and kinship care more than doubled across the system.
DHS is also involved in several other innovative programs aimed at raising awareness about the need for adoptive families including the Heart Gallery, a traveling photography exhibit featuring professional portraits of children in waiting; Wednesday’s Child, a collaboration with NBC10 which features media stories about children in care; and Philly Kids Connection, an annually published booklet featuring photographs and information about children needing permanent homes.
Families who are interested in learning more about adopting a child in placement should call 215-735-9988.
The Philadelphia Department of Human Services is the City agency charged with protecting children from abuse, neglect, and delinquency; ensuring their safety and permanency in nurturing home environments; and strengthening and preserving families by enhancing community-based prevention services. In partnership with community organizations, DHS provides services to strengthen the overall well being of Philadelphia children, youth, and families using a customer focused approach that is responsive to evolving community needs.