Six families came together Nov. 17 to share an important event — the adoption of their children.
A total of 12 children, ranging in age from three to 18, were adopted in an Anoka County courtroom as part of National Adoption Day.
One by one, the families completed the legal process as the other families watched and applauded.
First up was Nathan and Jennifer of Coon Rapids, who have provided foster care for six siblings since June 8, 2012.
“Your life changed on that day,” said Judge Bethany Fountain Lindberg.
Then she asked if they were prepared to take the next step.
“Are you ready for all of the rights and responsibilities, including financial, health, education and everything else that a birth parent would have?” Fountain Lindberg asked.
Nathan and Jennifer didn’t hesitate. In fact, they’d recommend adoption to anyone considering it.
“It’s hard and it’s worth it,” Jennifer said.
It can be challenging to step into a child’s life, but the smiles, laughter and joy make the effort very worthwhile, she said.
Some of the adoptions Nov. 17 were by relatives.
Family ties can complicate things sometimes, but love finds a way, according to Jeremy, a North Branch resident and a new father to a smiley, four-year-old girl.
“We have an open adoption and setting up visitations for the birth parent is hectic,” Jeremy said.
“But it’s worth it. She’s the light of my life and I wouldn’t be who I am without those two,” he said, referring to his fiancée and newly-adopted daughter.
The families are to be commended for their devotion and determination, according to Anoka County Commissioner Robyn West.
“You are an inspiration,” West said.
Cindy Cesare, director of Anoka County’s Community Social Services and Mental Health Department, thanked the social workers and assistant county attorneys involved with the families.
“They care deeply for your children,” Cesare told the families. “They want the best for all of you.”
To find out more about adopting, contact Nancy Le at 763-422-7104.