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Why Not You...Why Not Me?
Spread the word! Visit our Campaign Materials page to play "Why Not Me?" TV and radio spots and download posters, bookmarks, brochures, and more [go now]
Children never outgrow the need for parents. But for thousands of Texas children without permanent, loving homes, the wait to be adopted may be long and discouraging. Regardless of their age, most of these children still hold out hope that someday, someone will open their heart and give them a place they can call their own.
To shorten the wait, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services has launched a public awareness campaign to recruit adoptive parents called “Why Not Me?”
After all, that is what these children ask themselves almost every day. “Why not me? Why can’t I have a family?”
More than 6,000 of abused and neglected children in Texas are awaiting adoption and about 60 percent of them are age 6 or older. The older the child, the longer they tend to wait for adoption. Meet the children who are waiting at View Waiting Children.
We are asking mature, responsible Texans, why not you? Why not consider adopting an abused or neglected child? Whether they are 7 or 17, children never outgrow the need for parents.
The “Why Not Me?” campaign was made possible by a federal grant awarded to Texas for increasing adoptions more than any other state in 2005. The campaign includes the production and distribution of English and Spanish language TV and radio spots and many thousands of brochures, fact sheets, bookmarks, and other materials designed to help recruit adoptive parents. [view and download]
Many myths still persist about adoption.
The "independence" myth
Some people think teens automatically become adults at 18 and outgrow the need for parents. The truth is, regardless of their age, teens draw on the relationship with their families for strength and support long after they turn 18. Without the bonds of adoption, a young adult has no such safety net.
The "unwanted child" myth
Saying no one wants an older child is an easy way to let ourselves off the hook. In many extended families, there is an aunt or an uncle, grandparents, or a mature individual or couple who have love to share. Those with a true commitment to raising children know their relationship will continue past the teen years into young adulthood and beyond.
The "un-adoptable child" myth
Some think older child adoptions are rare and these children may not want to be adopted. Too often, however, teens are faced with the uncertainty surrounding the concept of adoption, not the warm reality of a family willing to share their lives. Prospective adoptive parents or foster parents can help older children realize the rewards of being with permanent families.
The "older children are too hard to raise" myth
Being an adoptive parent or foster family isn't easy, but just as in birth families, adults get through with a good sense of humor and tolerance for a growing youth. Anyone who adopts or fosters an older child must be comfortable with the fact that they will make mistakes. It takes love, courage, endurance, commitment, and faith. Most of all, it takes someone who cares and can advocate for that child.