Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Parent to Parent: Public Adoption
One local mom has a lot more stockings under the tree this holiday. 7's Lynn Martinez shows us how public adoption made it possible in tonight's Parent to Parent.
WSVN -- Katrina Deshazior never thought she would be a mom to six kids.
Katrina Deshazior: "Deanna, 17, Celeste, 15, Zakeeah, 15, Sasha, 4, Christopher, 2 and Faith, 1."
When her sister couldn't take care of her children...
Katrina Deshazior: "They removed the kids for not being in a safe house, neglected and everything."
Katrina was able to take in the three little ones, but with a daughter of her own, she couldn't take the two older girls.
Celeste Cohoon: "It was sad. I was depressed a lot. It was stressful."
Celeste and her sister were bounced from home to home and ended up in foster care. Katrina was heartbroken.
Katrina Deshazior: "We didn't want them to be separated at all. I was fighting to get all five of them.
Dr. Oren Wunderman: "The overwhelming majority of our clients are in foster care."
So she turned to the Family Resource Center of South Florida for help.
Dr. Oren Wunderman: "Our agency has done anywhere from about 50 to 120 adoptions each year."
They help families like Katrina's with public adoption. Public adoption was the only answer, because not only is there a process free, there's extra financial support for the family, including health care, prepaid college and a subsidy up to age 21.
Dr. Oren Wunderman: "The standard subsidy is around $413 a month."
The goal is to place these kids in loving, stable homes.
Dr. Oren Wunderman: "They really just want to open their hearts and open their homes to a child who's really had a troubled early life."
This month it became official.
Katrina Deshazior: "Like when I came and changed their last name, it was like, it's real."
Katrina is now mom to all six children. She said it can be a challenge, but it's worth it.
Katrina Deshazior: "That's all it takes, love and support. That's it."
It's been a long journey for Celeste and her siblings, but she couldn't be more grateful.
Celeste Cohoon: "I want to say thank you, and I love her."
Adoptive parents also have to pass a background check and a 30-hour parenting class. We'll take a closer look at private adoption and how it works on the next Parent to Parent.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Family Resource Center of South Florida:
Tel: (305) 374-6006