November is National Adoption Awareness Month and the LA-based non-profit RaiseAChild.US, in partnership with the Human Rights Campaign Foundation's "All Children - All Families" (ACAF) initiative, has launched a recruitment campaign to encourage LGBT people to consider fostering and adopting kids in need of a loving home. According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services' Administration for Children & Families, over 107,000 children in the foster care system are available to be adopted. There are 300,000 additional children in need of immediate foster placement but certified families are in short supply. RaiseAChild.US says about 4% of all adopted children in American are being raised by LGBT parents.
(Alec Mapa, his son and husband are featured in a series of banners along Sunset Blvd. from West Hollywood to Silver Lake. Photo by Karen Ocamb)
"Our goal is to encourage members of the LGBT community to consider building families through fostering and adoption," said RaiseAChild.US President Rich Valenza. "At the heart of our efforts, our Parent Advocates provide mentorship and guidance to help resolve roadblocks that may arise."
"As a society, we must address the epidemic of children who need families," said John Ireland, RaiseChild.US Media Director. "Many LGBT people simply do not know that agencies are eager to work with us to build our families through fostering and adoption. This campaign will inform our community of the need, engage prospective parents and result in safe and loving homes for these waiting children."
The recruitment events in four cities will include a brief performance by actor Alec Mapa (Ugly Betty), who fostered and adopted a 5-year-old son with his husband in 2010. The family is featured on banners throughout Los Angeles along Sunset Blvd (across from The Laugh Factory) in West Hollywood to Silver Lake. The events, which will connect prospective parents with foster agencies, will be held in the San Francisco Bay Area on Nov. 29, Orange County, Calif., on Dec. 3, Los Angeles on Dec. 4, and New York City on Dec. 6. For more information about the events, visit www.RaiseAChild.US