National Adoption Month continues; 23 Lubbock children adopted b

National Adoption Month continues; 23 Lubbock children adopted by 16 different families

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

As of September, 554 children in the West Texas area were living with families intending to adopt them.

Families all over Lubbock celebrated National Adoption Day Friday morning at the courthouse. 

"It's such a miracle for some of these kids to find a forever family," Karen Tipton, an adoption specialist for the West Texas region, said.

Tipton said the children now get to officially go home with new parents. 

"It's such a relief to these children after the adoption hearing. 'You're really going to keep us? We're forever in this home?' It's amazing how great they feel after this special day, and after this special party that we have because sometimes they're kind of worried," Tipton said.

Nearly six thousand kids have been adopted so far this year in Texas, including almost 500 in West Texas.

"We have lots of children who are adopted every year, so it's growing, growing, and growing, and we do more adoptions. So it has grown and that makes so many people so happy, especially the kiddos," Tipton said.

Charlie has been living with Amy and Joe Collins since March 2016, and while today makes it official, his new parents said it is just a formality.

"He was the day we got him, actually. He was a part of our family and has fit in since the very beginning, so this just makes it official," Amy and Joe Collins said. 

Amy said her family is excited for the next step after this 968 day process.

"We were so relieved for it to be over. This has been so long, but we've got closure and now finally we can move forward," Collins said.

Pam Carroway adopted two children today, and she said she is also ready to put this process in the past. 

"Our home has been inundated with CPS workers, case workers, and now we don't have to do that anymore. Now we're just a regular family looking to each milestone of raising these kiddos," Carroway said.

She said while a new journey is ahead for Elijah and Elyssa, this is the only home they know. 

"They've only ever had us. So they will not understand the excitement and what it took to get them here. To them, this is a normal life," Carroway said.

Tipton added people do not have to adopt to make a difference in the lives of these children.

"This is such a special day. Not everyone in our community wants to adopt or foster, but there are lots of ways community folks can do to support these families and support the efforts for fostering and adoption. So, it takes a lot of folks to get this done," Tipton said.

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