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Michigan families, children celebrate National Adoption Day

Susan Wares adopted her three grandkids
Jennifer Guerra
Michigan Radio
Susan Wares adopted her three grandkids

Families across the country are celebrating the addition of new family members as part of National Adoption Day on Nov. 23.

Nearly 30 Michigan counties are holding Adoption Day events.

Susan Wares finalized the adoptionof her oldest grandchild today at Washtenaw County Court. Wares has been taking care of her three little grandchildren - two boys, one girl - for the last couple of years. She officially adopted the two boys in August. And now it’s their older sister Autumn’s turn, who's 7.

Susan Wares is excited to play Mom again. She says when she raised her own kids, she had to work, so she missed out on a lot:

"Now, I’m retired and I’m raising three young ones, and now I get to do all the stuff like take things to school and be with them. I saw him walk for the first time and I didn’t get that with my kids. This is nice. It’s nice."

Though the three little ones are a handful, she adds with a smile.

Stacie Scott and her husband, Basil, pulled their two grandchildren, Dana and Naima, out of foster care a year and a half ago. Since then, the Scotts have been raising the two toddlers themselves.

Stacie Scott and her husband made the adoptions official today at Washtenaw County Court:

"I just couldn’t bear to see my grandchildren moved from house to house in foster care. I initially had them in foster care. I wanted them to have stability and somewhere to be safe. So that’s why I chose to take them when they were young."

There are more than 3,500 Michigan kids in foster care who are eligible for adoption. According to the state Department of Human Services, about 2,500 children in foster care have been adopted so far this year.

Jennifer is a reporter for Michigan Radio's State of Opportunity project, which looks at kids from low-income families and what it takes to get them ahead. She previously covered arts and culture for the station, and was one of the lead reporters on the award-winning education series Rebuilding Detroit Schools. Prior to working at Michigan Radio, Jennifer lived in New York where she was a producer at WFUV, an NPR station in the Bronx.
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