ROANOKE, Va. – “A huge success.”
That’s what DePaul Community Resources says about this year’s 30 Days of Hope.
Over 30 days, 10 News showed you 30 children. We shared their faces and stories hoping to find them safe and loving homes. Some are heartbreaking.
“I’m tired of seeing people having a family and not me. If I don’t get a new family, I’ll have to be alone and I’ll have to do it myself. I don’t want that to happen,” said Grayson when talking about why he wants a family.
Many of you called about 13-year-old Grayson after seeing that but others called just wanting information about fostering or adopting one of the more than 700 children who can be adopted in Virginia.
“This has been the most fruitful campaign that we’ve done since we started working with you guys on the 30 Days of Hope campaign,” said Emily Moore, DePaul Community Resources regional recruiter. “We’ve just seen an outpour of love and support from our community. It really surprised us seeing that our best numbers have been during the middle of a global pandemic.”
Moore says they’ve gotten 120 inquiries from all over this region and they are still coming in. She says the people calling were very diverse, which is important because the children are diverse too.
“We had young families that were calling, thinking about maybe starting their own family but they weren’t inquiring about the traditional infants and toddlers like we typically see,” said Moore. “We saw the empty nesters who maybe just aren’t done parenting, even though their children have left the house they still have support and love they want to be able to give these kids.”
Many people reached out offering to buy Christmas presents or mentor teens who were interested in construction. For Moore, this is encouraging since the need is so great right now.
“Our numbers have been down for the most part since the beginning of the pandemic. I think folks just have so many other things going on,” said Moore. “We are very thankful for WSLS 10 giving us this platform and opportunity to talk about the need in our community. You guys have such a reach across our Commonwealth and we are just really thankful that you all have made this a successful, growing campaign.”
Even with the large turnout, the work continues.
“We still will have a need for foster parents through next November and beyond. Our hope is that this gets people asking questions, ‘What does this look like in my community? How can I be a part of the solution? Where does my family fit into this?’” said Moore.
Thank you for sharing these stories on social media. That’s one way you can help if you can’t take a kid into your home. Here are some other ways to help.
If you have questions about foster care or adoption, contact DePaul Community Resources here.
There are more than 700 children who are ready for foster to adoption in Virginia. They are ready to find a permanent and loving forever family. 10 News is profiling one child who needs a home every day at 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. in 30 Days of Hope. The children are all ages and races and were put into foster care due to no fault of their own. 2020 marks the fourth year 10 News is doing this series.