National Adoption Day will be celebrated in Cowlitz County on November 17, 2017, with adoptions occurring at 9:30 a.m. and a public celebration following. The adoptions will be held in the Commissioner's Meeting Room and the celebration will be in the General Meeting Room, both on the 3rd floor of the Cowlitz County Administration Building located at 207 N. 4th Ave, Kelso Washington.
Our celebration this year will include for following speakers: Superior Court Judge Marilyn Haan, Juvenile Presiding Judge and Ms. Debbie Marker, the Adoption Program Manager for this region.
National Adoption Day is a nationwide effort to increase awareness of the more than 110,000 children in foster care across the country waiting to find permanent, loving families. In the state of Washington as of October 2017, there are 9,417 children in foster care. As of October 2017 there were 1,715 children under age 18 that were legally free (able to be adopted) with 628 of those children in our local region.
Nationally over 20,000 children age out of the foster care system each year with no family or permanent home. In Washington there were 35 children that aged out of the system in 2015, 68 in 2014, 92 in 2013. This figure is important because children that age out of care are less likely to graduate from high school, more likely to become homeless, more likely to be on public assistance and many other challenges that can continue on throughout the rest of their lives.
Nearly 54,500 children across the nation National Adoption Day has helped move from foster care to a forever family since it started in 2000. This is our twelfth year of celebrating National Adoption Day in Cowlitz County, the first having occurred in November 2006.
In Washington in 2016 there were 1,346 children adopted, with 575 of those children adopted by relatives. In 2015 there were 1,468 adoptions completed, with 649 of those children adopted by relatives. In 2016 in Cowlitz County we have had 27 finalized adoptions from foster care.
"I am thrilled to oversee the adoption of children on Cowlitz County National Adoption Day. It is truly wonderful to see these children move forward with their permanent forever families," said Superior Court Judge Marilyn Haan. "I hope the public will join us to celebrate this joyous occasion."
Note: Some of the statistics in this article were obtained from NationalAdoptionDay.org and the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services.
For Additional Information Please Contact:
Honorable Marilyn K. Haan, Cowlitz County Superior Court Judge