This week the Orange County Board of Supervisors proclaimed November 2019 as Adoption Awareness Month and presented a resolution to the County of Orange Social Services Agency (SSA) and resource parent (i.e., foster parent) Vanessa Acosta in recognition of their significant contributions to support and mentor foster youth and resource families in Orange County.
More than 280 adoptions were finalized in Orange County in Fiscal Year 2018-2019 (July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2019.)
Ms. Acosta was honored by the Board of Supervisors on behalf of Orange County adoptive families for her work as a resource parent, adoptive parent, educator and advocate. Ms. Acosta began the process of becoming a resource parent with her husband in 2011, fostering more than 20 children and youth, ultimately adopting six children. In addition, Ms. Acosta advocates for biological parents who are working to reunify with their children. She is also active in the Foster Care Auxiliary and her faith community to help educate families on the challenges and rewards that come with fostering and fostering-to-adopt.
“Every child and youth deserves a loving family environment that provides a sense of belonging and security,” said Fifth District Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, Chairwoman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors. “We thank Orange County adoptive parents, like
Vanessa Acosta, for their compassion and commitment to helping our community and ensuring a brighter future for our children.”
“I am grateful for brave foster parents like Ms. Acosta who have opened their homes and their hearts to children in need of loving families,” said Vice Chair, Supervisor Michelle Steel, who represents the Second District. “This month we recognize all foster and adoptive families for their selfless efforts on behalf of Orange County’s children,” she added.
The theme of this year’s National Adoption Month is Youth Voices: Why Family Matters, which is focused on the importance of empowering youth voices — especially those of teens who are in foster care. Older youth, similar to children with disabilities and those who are part of a sibling set, often take longer to place in permanent, home-based care. Securing lifelong connections for teens in foster care is a critical component in determining their future achievement, health and well-being. When foster youth are empowered to share their personal stories, their unique insights can inspire their peers and bring awareness to prospective adoptive families.
First District Supervisor Andrew Do stated, “The term family can take on many shapes and forms, and a strong connection with a caring adult can help improve a youth’s opportunity for success and stability.” Do continued, “We salute our Orange County adoptive families who selflessly work to provide children with a home, love and a sense of stability.”
“As the uncle of two adopted children in my family, I believe people who open their hearts and their homes are providing a noble community service. All vulnerable foster children deserve to thrive under safe, supportive care for the best chances of a stable adult life. The Adoption Awareness Month presentation recognizes the compassionate spirit of Vanessa Acosta and all adoptive families in our community. Thank you for your selfless work,” said Supervisor Donald P. Wagner, Third District.
“National Adoption Month reminds us that adoptive parents play a vital role in providing a sense of family and belonging to youth in need. In raising any child, we know it can take a village. I urge all in our community to do their part to help encourage and provide support to those who have provided a family to a foster youth,” said Fourth District Supervisor Doug Chaffee.
For more information on becoming a resource family, please call (888) 871-KIDS or visit www.oc4kids.com.
The article above was released by the OC Social Services Agency.