Thursday, December 27, 2018
News 12 at 6/NBC at 7
RICHMOND COUNTY, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Hundreds of foster kids on both sides of the river need homes. It's more than 400 in both states and dozens of those are here in Richmond County.
The number of kids waiting to be fostered and adopted is a growing issue on both sides of the river.
After retiring from the military, one single mom found a way to give back in a different way.
“I'm just blessed to have the opportunity to have these kids here and show them, love,” said Andran Brooks, a parent.
She is counting all three of her blessings.
"I told her I wanted to adopt one child,” said Brooks.
But her case manager had a better idea.
“And then she came and said, you know I think you would be just awesome for these kids here. And I heard kids with an ‘s’,” said Brooks.
It was twin boys and their big sister. Siblings she could not bare to see ripped apart.
“They did not know where was home," said Brooks.
Just like a lot of other kids. Social services say there are 400 kids in Georgia waiting to be adopted.
More than a dozen are right here in Richmond County. Brooks home would be the third one for these three.
"Them getting off that bus and as soon as they get on their little legs, 'hey mommy, hey,' that is so rewarding it really is," said Brooks.
To their surprise, it would also be the last move they'd have to make. Brooks says she's in the final stages of adopting them.
“They're my kids, they are mine. Nobody's going to take them away, I love them,” said Brooks.
Brooks calls it a win-win situation.
"And they give you the biggest hug, so that alone right there is just rewarding for me," said Brooks.
She encourages others if you have the time, the patience, and the love to give foster and adopt.
"The children that you get, they don't care whether you're perfect, they don't care about that. They don't care whether your fat, short, tall skinny. They just want someone to love them," said Brooks.
Brooks says she constantly has to reassure these kids that they are home and won't be taken away. But this is rare. Social services say there are not enough foster families in the region.
In most cases, siblings have to be separated and taken as far as four hours away to find a loving home.
Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018
News 12 @ 6 O'clock / NBC 26 at 7
GRANITEVILLE, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) -- For one pastor, adoption is something he takes to heart.
"It is something that just speaks to my heart on many levels,” says Pastor Wes Holbrook.
Wes Holbrook is a campus pastor at Cedar Creek in Graniteville. Although his situation was a little different Holbrook knows the joys of being adopted.
"That's what we all want right? We all want to be a part of a loving family and to not have that, it's got to be heartbreaking."
Social Services says 4700 kids in South Carolina know that heartbreak and 475 of those kids are waiting for a family to adopt them.
"It's an epidemic. I think that's what originally broke my heart was the number."
Social Services says that number is increasing every day.
"There's no excuse for that," says Holbrook.
Wes Holbrook is trying to start a movement.
"We have people that have struggled for years with fertility issues, things like that, begged God, how come you won't give me a child and God's going, I got a bunch of kids right here."
Five families from his church have already stepped up to foster and adopt.
"I've seen it! I've seen kids come through the foster system, who find their place in their forever home."
Sara was in foster care since she was born. She has since been adopted and is now in a loving home.
But Holbrook isn't just talking the talk, he's walking the walk and getting involved.
"My wife and I have for years prayed about being a foster family. God has not called us to do that but he has called us to be a Respite family."
You can become a Respite like Wes and his wife who help out other foster parents. There are so many options that can help in such a big way.
Anyone interested in learning more about adoption can call HeartFelt Calling, 888-828-3555 or visit DDS South Carolina.