Our Adoption Issue!
The Muir Family By: Sara Muir, New Wilmington, PA
e are the Muir family. This picture is the 2016 version. Our family up to this point, has been more of a dynamic process, than a static entity. As I look back over the years, our family photos have morphed as we gave birth to one, and then two, baby boys; as we grieved the loss of one unborn child; as we gave birth to our first daughter; as we became parents to twenty different children through foster care; and then as we adopted our youngest two daughters, and then our youngest son. People often ask why we chose to foster and adopt. To me, the answer is simple. There are children who are in need of a home and a family; we have a home and a family to fill this need. Foster care and adoption was never about finding more children for our family, it was always about providing a family for our children. When we were initially certified as foster parents in 2011, our biological children were 5, 7, and 8 years old. We had no expectations or assumptions about what the foster care journey would hold for us. Two hours after receiving our foster care certification in the mail, we received a call to bring two toddlers into our family. We loved these two for a year before they returned home to their mom. From there, we were foster parents to many other children. Some stayed a few days, some many months. Saying goodbye is hard. Being a child, shuffled from one home to another, is harder. As I look at pictures from this time in our life, two faces stand out in particular. After leaving our home-our 16 year old former foster son was murdered by gun violence, and our 15 year old former foster daughter took her own life. Being a foster parent is hard. Being a youth who has to face poverty, gun violence, and the dark road of mental health is harder.
In a perfect world, foster parents would not be needed. Children and families would stay together. My three adopted children miss their birth parents, and long to be with them- it is our hope and intention that there will be meaningful contact in the future. Being an adoptive parent is hard. Being an adopted child is harder. No matter how hard the good-byes are, no matter how stressful the constant change in family dynamic is-it pales in comparison to the heartache of a child without a family. It is a privilege to be able to stand in the gap. If you’ve ever considered foster care or adoption, and have said “but I don’t think I could…let them go”, “say goodbye”, “deal with the system”, “etc.”, ask these questions instead. Do I have a home? Can I love a child? Can I be the one to stand in the gap? Can I be the one to give, in order for a child to receive? You may not feel ready. We weren’t ready; God does not call the equipped, He equips the called. If you are willing to walk through the doors that are opened to you with faith, you will do great things. Children need families. If they cannot remain with their birth families, they need foster and adoptive families. Not everyone can be a foster or adoptive family. But maybe you can? I went out to the local market, one chilly and sunny October afternoon to buy apples. I came home with my forever daughters. I went to work one ordinary September day. I came home with my forever son. Life is full of extraordinary moments that are mixed in with the ordinary days. Your heart, your open and willing heart, may be the difference. You could stand in the gap for a child.
“A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.” - Psalm 68:5
A Message From Executive Director Dr. Sue Miklos
Heart’s Desire The psalmist wrote, May He grant you according to your heart’s desire, and fulfill all your purpose (Psalm 20:4). God puts dreams in our hearts. If we trust Him enough to take Him at His word, we will find ourselves on a journey toward the fulfillment of those dreams. And so, as we follow His lead, life unfolds; not always how we envision it with our limit minds, but how God intended it to be. Some couples get married later in life and decide not to have children. Some are unable to have children of their own. Some raise a family and then feel lead to share their parenting experience & love with foster children which sometimes results in adoption. In one of our previous adoption Newsletters, I was struck by a quote from an adoptive father. He said, “I didn’t know I had an empty space in my heart until it was filled. Now, I can’t imagine coming home to a quiet house. Something very important would be missing…a family.” How sad it would have been if he’d never taken the step toward foster parenting that led him to the joy he now has. Parenting is an incomparable experience, one filled with challenges, gratification and much joy. Adults see things through the eyes of their child as they encounter firsts – first bike ride, first trip to the zoo, first baseball game. Providing a permanent home to a child not only blesses the child, but also blesses the giver with great joy. Simply feeling love is as good as life gets. As the Executive Director, I am so blessed to be part of the Bair ministry that believes God can fill empty spaces in hearts, replace sadness with joy, and fulfill the dreams He has placed in the hearts of children & families.
Interested in Becoming a Foster or Foster-to-Adopt Parent? Are you interested in becoming a foster or fosterto-adopt parent? The Bair Foundation has a 3 step process. Contact your local Bair office for more information or apply online at www.bair.org. Your education as a foster parent begins at
our Group Study Process. Think of the GSP as “Foster Parent University”. At the GSP, you will have an opportunity to meet and interact with our staff and foster parents.
After completing the GSP, you will be assigned a Home Study date. The Home Study process includes an investigation of your background, an inspection of your home and the completion of all required paperwork.
The Bair Foundation is dedicated to supporting our foster parents. As you start your journey as a foster parent, we will be right by your side to make sure you have the necessary training, tools and support.
hen Kyle & Lynae Thiel from Bair’s Erie office started fostering children, they thought they only wanted to be respite parents. Lynae became pregnant and, near the same time, the family accepted a placement of two boys. Needless to say, the Thiel’s fell in love with them as they fit right into their family! The Lord provided the family with a larger vehicle for their expanding family and guidance to care for them. The boys remained with the Thiel’s for two years and were adopted shortly after! Kyle stated “God has used these boys to make us better people and better parents!”
The Thiel Family “Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord whose confidence is in him.” - Jeremiah 17:7
The Abbott Family
The Justice Family
lease join us in celebrating “Gotcha Day” for Christopher! Christopher was adopted by one of our amazing families, Ray and Melissa Justice from Bair’s Columbus office.
ongratulations to the Abbott family from our Dayton office! Sarayah and Serenity’s adoptions were celebrated on National Adoption Day. Please join us in prayer for the Abbott family in this new chapter!
The Harkleroad Family
ongratulations to John and Jewel Harkleroad from Bair’s Dayton office on their adoption of Dusty! They were surrounded by 2530 family members and close friends to celebrate such a blessing! Welcome home, Dusty!!! Please congratulate this FOREVER FAMILY!
The Tata Family
ongratulations Tata Family from the Columbus office on their recent adoption of Nathan!
The Wessell Family
he Kent/Cleveland office extends Congratulations to the Wessell family on their recent adoption of Matthew!!
The Gingrich Family
t was such an honor to share in the wonderful occasion of Monica & Eric Gingrichâ€™s adoption finalization of Christopher! Please join us in the joyous celebration with this great family!
The Gregg Family
he Columbus office would like to congratulate the Greggs family on their recent adoptions! Donald, Rhonda, Nova and Jada are now a forever family!
The Hammond Family
oin the Columbus office in celebrating Gotcha Day for the Hammond Family! Rob, Sara, Ava, Jack & Hailey are all smiles on Adoption Day!
K The Carpenter Family
amerra Renee and Carletta Griffis from Bair’s Columbus office are all smiles at the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas during their adoption finalization!
The Griffis Family
ongratulations to the Carpenter family from Bair’s Columbus office on the finalization of their adoption of Mila!
The Morse Family The Whitmer Family
ongratulations to the Whitmer family from Bair’s Dayton office on the finalization of their adoption of Keyaunna! Current and former staff from Family Services and Bair who had been a part of Keyaunna’s journey came out to support her on this special day!
lease join the Columbus office in celebrating Gotcha Day with Dash, April, & Jason! April Griffiths-Morse and Jason Morse are all smiles as they chased a dashing Dash to capture this blessed day on camera. Congratulations!!
The Woods Family The Mingo Family
e would like to wish a HUGE congratulations to the Woods family on Hunter’s GotchaDay!!! Congratulations to Phelton, Judy and big sister Jasmine from Bair’s Columbus office!!
azmine was placed in my home in August 2013 as a foster placement. We quickly bonded and she fit right in with the family. The thing that held true throughout the last two years, was that we never gave up on each other. After 881 days in foster care in my home, Jazmine is officially ours.” - Rhonda Mingo, Greenville office
The Hupp Family
ur cup runneth over! Congratulations to Tim & Sherry Hupp from Bair’s Kent, Ohio office on their adoption of a beautiful sibling group of FOUR... YES we said FOUR! Shirlay, Moriah, Caleb and Joshua!!! This adoption was 4 years in the making. This is the Hupp’s second adoption! We at Bair are SO GRATEFUL and HONORED to play a small part in God’s all-knowing plan for these precious, beautiful children! Blessings to this family!!!
The Nanney Family
lease join the Columbus office in joyous celebration of the Nanney Family!!!! The court made official what was already in the hearts of Phil, Sara, Claire, & Russell when Russell’s adoption was recently finalized. The Hayes family writes, “we are thankful for each person at The Bair Foundation who had a part in Russell’s foster care and adoption. The entire family is thrilled that he is officially part of our family!”
The Brown family and social workers Adam’s adoption day.
The Brown Family We prayed that we would know when we came across the one that was supposed to be ours...
e already had a nine-year-old and four-year-old daughter and we thought we were looking for a boy in between their age but when I read Adam’s profile, he was everything that we were looking for but he was 12. It didn’t matter, I was in love, I knew I was his mom and I just didn’t know how I was going to present it to my husband, Greg. My nine-yearold daughter it took upon herself to show his profile to her dad and immediately he said to get a hold of Bair and find out what we have to do to get him. That began the process of finding out that we needed to get certified in foster care. I told them we were interested in Adam, and they said that they would try to find out about Adam. We started the pre-service training, and about two weeks in we found out that he was in a pre-adoptive home and would not be available for us to contact because he was already getting adopted. I was totally heartbroken, I knew that something was wrong because I knew that he was mine. We prayed and prayed about it and felt like maybe God just used his adorable little face to show us that we could feel that way about a child that wasn’t biologically ours and continued with the paperwork process and classes and more classes. Throughout all the classes and paperwork, I couldn’t stop thinking about Adam, I would pray for him every night pray that he would be in a family that loves him and
where he fits in. I’ll never forget when we finally made it to the actual adoption class and I met Shannon from The Bair Foundation, and told her why we were there. I told her that I had seen Adam on the Pennsylvania Adoption Exchange (PAE) website and she knew who he was! She told me he had a raspy little voice, awesome dimples, etc as I continued to pour my heart out to her to make sure she knew how I felt about him.
The day we first met Adam!
To make a very long story short we became approved as resource parents (foster and adoption) at the end of September and I was on the website on October 2nd, to find out that Adam was on it! I was so excited I didn’t even know what to do. I had all of his caseworker’s contact information right there in front of me. I contacted the caseworker and expressed that I wanted to meet him because I’m his mom. Because I’ve prayed for him every single night. Because I’m totally in love with a boy that I’ve never met. I think that his caseworker, Kim, on the other end of the phone would’ve had to thought either that I was absolutely crazy, or that I would do whatever I could do to make sure that I could meet him because she could hear love in my voice. Praise God she thought the latter and said she would work on finding out what was going on but that the county wasn’t going to move very fast on his case
because of everything that Adam had just been through (being in another pre-adoptive home that was disrupted along with a previous disrupted adoption). I asked her what we could do to come across like real people rather than just paperwork. She suggested that I make a life book and send it to Adam. So immediately I spent the next two days making a book of our funniest moments as a family. I just wanted him to feel who we really were, see pictures and see if he would feel a connection to us, and if he would want to meet us. The next few weeks felt like torture, it was the slowest time of my life waiting to hear back if he and the county were interested in meeting us. I’ll never forget I was at a parent-teacher conference when I got the phone call from Kim saying that Adam got our book and was really, really interested in meeting us, but he was also going to meet a couple other families that would be available that weekend. I’m not sure how I even made it through the parent teacher conference to say that I was excited would have been an understatement.
The Brown family on
the Indiana County, PA Courthouse steps
The couple hour drive down to Indiana County was the most joyous anticipation that we had had since we were giving birth to the girls. I knew I was meeting my son. Of course we knew that he would be meeting other families but from the beginning from the first time I saw his face there’s no question that he was mine, so I just trusted God. They told me that he probably wouldn’t want to hug me, I shouldn’t be too overwhelming, which is kind of hard for me, ha ha. I wasn’t really expecting to walk right into the interview room and Adam would be sitting there. I thought he would be brought in after we talked to all of his workers first. But no, they walked us into the room and there he was the cutest, tannest, most adorable all-big-dimpled amazing boy... I could barely keep it together. I told him all the thoughts that were running through my head and asked him if I could hug him, he stood right up and let me. In my heart it was confirmed, he was mine just like I’d always known. He asked lots of questions and we talked like friends, it was easy. They gave him the chance to meet other people if he wanted to and to come have an overnight visit with us the very next weekend if we were all up for it. So that’s when the girls got to fall in love too! God is so good and faithful! The county placed Adam with us a week later. It has been a wild ride, we moved a teenager in with zero experience on how to handle one! It was the best decision of our lives!!!”
Adam with his new sisters on his Adoption Day!
Born not from our flesh but born in our hearts... you were longed for and wanted and loved from the start!
The Dopudja Family
hen asked about their adoption story, the Dopujda’s eyes light up as they recall how their adopted daughter, Champagne, became part of their lives. When discussing becoming a permanent resource for Champagne, they tell it with tears, happiness, laughter, and joy. Mark remembers like it was yesterday when his wife, Bobbi, came home from teaching and told him that she met “this little girl at school today. She broke and melted my heart.” From then on, Mark kept this “little girl” in his prayers. Even when Bobbi no longer saw Champagne daily at school, she would try to “keep tabs” on her and her siblings. About three years later, the Dopudjas received an email saying Champagne and her siblings were placed into foster care and the county was contacting previous connections to find a permanent resource for the children. Mark says that he knew right then that it was “God’s plan” and they were going to “adopt this little girl someday.” In 2014, the Dopudjas and Champagne were connected through a SWAN unit, Child Specific Recruitment (CSR), being completed by a permanency worker through The Bair Foundation’s New Wilmington office. This allowed the Dopudja family to have contact and weekend visitation with Champagne. The Dopudjas felt that Champagne needed to be “a kid again and not see herself as her siblings’ caretaker.” The Dopudjas jumped at the opportunity to pursue foster to adoption and became certified resource parents. As their visits increased, so did their love. Champagne decided to separate from her siblings and pursue permanency with the Dopudja family. The Dopudjas’ beliefs and attitudes have changed regarding permanency. They learned that there are more youth in foster care who are “hardworking, dedicated, determined, and just want a family to love and accept them.” Champage is striving to become successful and productive, and it takes the support of a family, school system, and the community alongside the caseworkers to positively influence her life. Mark and Bobbi agreed that “there can be no joy greater than watching Champagne bloom into maturity as a responsible, well-adjusted individual.” They stated that opening their home and family has provided Champagne with stability and given her a second chance at life.
The Martin Family
wo years ago Brad and Jena Martin did not have any children. Today the Martin’s are a family of six; no they did not have two sets of twins, they merely were open to the plans of God and adopted four beautiful children from foster care. The first set of brothers (Dakota & Jacob) had been already been in four foster placements before arriving at the Martin home. Dakota came to them at the age of 4 and was not yet potty trained. Upon further testing to see why he was non-verbal, it was discovered he couldn’t hear. Being with the Martins was the first time he ever received any support services because they and the Bair Foundation had advocated on his behalf. A second sibling group, Gracie & Jackson completed the family circle, for now! The Martin’s are still fostering, so anything is possible.
The Blum Family
The Jones Family
eborah was referred to by Sylvia as “Aunt Bea” and since their memorable and most celebrated adoption, is now referred to as “Mama Bea.” These two light up a room with their smiles and positive outlooks on life, making all that come into contact with them happy and joyful as well. Deborah’s mother also helps with providing child care and assistance with before-and-after school care on a daily basis, providing extra support and love to Sylvia. Deborah truly wants Sylvia to have “the best life, that she deserves it.” She started to care for Sylvia in her home since September 2014 and has seen Sylvia begin to heal through love, faith, support, structure, guidance, and positive reinforcement that Deborah provides. Deborah stated that Sylvia is “flying high like this bright, beautiful butterfly, as her spirit is alive again; she is a true little angel.”
hen Mike and I decided to open our home to foster children a little over 3 years ago, we were not intending to adopt. We had two biological children and an adopted teenager with emotional needs. Our first placement was an adorable 10 month old baby boy and his 20 month old half-sister. He was snuggly and personable, eager to learn and quick to smile, however I didn’t quite know what to make of her. She did not interact with us much, didn’t seem to know how to play, and had very limited communication. She screamed at night and had horrible tantrums, even when she was getting her way. I prayed that God would give me a mom’s love for this little girl and He did exactly that. When her brother left, just six weeks later, our hearts were broken, but Mike and I, as well as our 3 girls, knew without a doubt that this little girl was a part of our family. That day started an emotional journey that lasted until the day of her adoption 14 months later. Since then our Carrie Ann has been such a joy to all of us. She no longer screams at night or has the violent tantrums. She has a speech disorder but works hard to continue to learn and grow. She prayed a couple of months ago that God would send a baby to us, and that very day we got a call asking us if we would take a two month old foster placement. Needless to say Carrie Ann adores “her” baby, and we are looking forward to a bright future.” -Elizabeth Blum, New Wilmington office
The Hough Family Family is not defined by last name or blood, it’s defined by commitment, love, support and mutual respect. The Hough’s family enjoys the simple things in life, dinners out, laughter and just being together. They treasure every moment and experience especially the one they had at Disney World. Home is wherever they are... TOGETHER.
The Lehman Family The Riley Family
y favorite adoption clipping is “Not flesh of my flesh, nor bone of my bone, yet mysteriously my own!” What a thrill to have experienced this! Such a wonder, this knitting of hearts. Our five year adoption journey has taught us how small we are and how very BIG our God is. 21st Century miracles are really neat! Our foster trainings were all great especially the lessons on trauma. How is it humanly possible to be sunk into this much H.A.R.D and still come up breathing? What is left to say but Thank You Jesus! - The Lehman Family, Erie office
The Salsberg Family
fter their grandson’s biological mother had passed away, and Regis’s son was unable to care for him, Regis and Delia from Bair’s New Wilmington office decided to foster their young grandson. They fostered him for two years until they recently adopted him. The Rileys encourage their grandson to have frequent visits with his half siblings and extended family, as they all have Sunday dinners together. They believe in, and take pride in, their family’s strong support for one another. They also help their grandson to have a good relationship with his biological father and honor his biological mother through photographs and adding to his Lifebook. Regis and Delia shared, with humor, that their grandson likes to wave to all of the neighbors as he “thinks he is the President of the street.” Regis and Delia feel that caring for their grandson has brought so much more love and joy to their relationship, family, and life. With tears of joy during his adoption, Delia expressed to everyone, “this is the happiest day of my life and I have my step-son to thank!”
he Salsbergs have been certified as foster parents through The Bair Foundation’s New Wilmington office since November 25, 2013 and first cared for their two pre-adoptive sons on January 17, 2014 for their first respite weekend. They were placed on March 7, 2014. Tracey Salsberg states that strengths include “our faith and God, if it wasn’t for Him, we wouldn’t have these children in our care or be able to get through each day. We are very grateful for the opportunity to care for our sons and treasure each moment that we spend together as a family.” The Salsbergs enjoy outdoor activities like going to the lake, parks, and county fairs. Scott and Tracey, an active, outgoing couple, feel, in a way, “like big kids”, and love doing things that are entertaining right along with their children. They “blend their family together,” believing that “family is family whether it is blood or not.
Caleb and AJ are finally Salsberg’s!
The Stanley Family The Stern Family
ur names are Justin and Nicole Stern. This year, we had the privilege of adopting our three foster children, ages 2, 3, and 4. Our children were in our home almost a year and a half before their adoption. For prospective foster/adoptive parents, the advice that we would give is to be open to change and to the many adjustments. I am happy to say, that about six months in, we saw a great change in our children as they became more adjusted and secure. Recently, an evaluator was doing a 3-year-old assessment with our son. The evaluator asked our son if he could give him another word for ‘Mommy.’ Our son responded with ‘I love you.’ To us, that makes all the difficulty in the beginning worth it.” - Nicole Stern, New Wilmington office
eff Stanley, a prominent Dallas pastor and Diane Stanley a dedicated mom and business owner have dedicated their lives to taking in God’s children and loving them unconditionally. Jeff & Diane are the type of parents that would open their heart and home to our children regardless of their race, gender, and background. They truly believe in making a difference in the lives of our children. They have taken in high end treatment service children and provided them with the quality service that Bair’s vision and mission is all about. They restored, empowered, and have given these children a forever home and family. It was a blessing to see the faces of each one of these little ones as they finalized their adoption. It was just more of an example of God’s everlasting love.
The Ford Family
ongratulations to Wanda Ford from Bair’s Dallas office, on her adoption of her new son, Trey, and daughter, Journey! The Ford family celebrated National Adoption Day in Tarrant County, Texas on 11/20/15.
Jeff & Diane Stanley with their children DJ, Caleb, D’Maya, Juliette & Juliana
The Hayes Family
The Hammond Family
rian and I had always wanted to have children and as we prayed, we felt led to pursue foster/adopt through the Bair Foundation. We had worked with children in the system for years and knew there was a great need for homes for children. Brian and I had felt God wanted us to take in siblings, we were thinking two girls, we had no idea God had a bigger plan. We received a call shortly after we were certified as adoptive parents that they had “three girls” ages 14, 10, and 2 at the time. Brian and I knew immediately, without having met the girls, that these were “our” children. We began visits with them which only confirmed what we knew in our hearts the day we received the call, that these were “our kids.” Our kids have been with us now over two years, we finalized our adoption in January 2015. We couldn’t imagine life without them! Every day is a journey with them that has become an incredible blessing to all of us in our family. Watching them grow, heal, develop has become one of the greatest joys in our lives!” -Mary Lynn Hammond, New Wilmington office
wo and a half years ago I had just said goodbye to a very difficult long term foster care placement and asked my foster care agency to give me “a little break”. Well... They gave me all of 3 days. I agreed to take the little boy who needed a placement on a “respite only” basis, which means that I had planned on only keeping him long enough for them to find another home for him... Yesterday that little boy became my son “officially”. God’s plans are not my plans but they are so much better than anything I could imagine or plan for myself... - Laura Hayes, Greenville office
The Kucera Family
aul & Loretta Kucera from the Dallas office are excellent parents who love their children. They are pillars in the community and always willing to provide a helping hand when needed. Since being foster parents with Bair they have shown compassion, strength, and love through the heart of Jesus Christ. They opened their home to not only Amy & Ashley, who they adopted, but also to another sibling group who are going through the adoption process. We watched Amy and Ashley come into care with such broken spirits and behaviors but by being in the Kucera home, where they have been loved, protected, and empowered to be respected, they have become healthy, and loving little girls. The girls are swimming, playing in sports, and even riding horses. They absolutely love their forever family and are experiencing such an overwhelming amount of love and affection from the entire family. At the adoption ceremony, the Kucera’s said, “This is what God’s love is all about!”
The Boylan Family
he Boylan family from the New Wilmington office became foster parents in August 2013 and, including respite, the family has cared for over 20 children. Mark and Cynthia Boylan cared for Natalie since she was three days old and recently celebrated her second birthday! Mark calls her, “daddy’s little girl.” Cynthia said that the adoption process had been “an emotional roller coaster, but was worth every grief, loss, and tear along the way. Raechel, Cynthia’s biological daughter, wanted to name her sister “Natalie,” which they found out means “God’s Christmas gift”, a gift they can celebrate every day and not just in December. The Boylan family continues to foster even after the adoption, sharing their love with even more children. The Boylans celebrate this Christmas gift every day!
Why We Chose Bair...
The Hoffmaster Family
y journey began in early 2013 after an incident made me realize that my house was too quiet!! But I thought I liked quiet?!?! You see, I was 52 years old, had been divorced for over two years, it had been just me and my two dogs for over three years, and I had already helped to raise four children. I deserved quiet…and peaceful, right?? The incident that changed my mind was at Christmas 2012. I was a mental health counselor at a residential treatment center for boys and one of my former clients needed a place to go for Christmas break. I volunteered and it was the best Christmas I’d had for some time! After that week, I felt a burden to find a way to fill the “quiet” of my home. I prayed to the Lord that I needed to “do something” with my house. Through a couple of “situations,” I realized that I should pursue the idea of foster care, weekend respite in particular. I completed all the paperwork and training for foster care and got my first foster son on 2/26/2014. I have had a total of six foster kids since then, along with several respites. I began to think about the possibility of adoption after attending a conference where I met Kim Young, Vice President for The Bair Foundation. She invited me to a class that was discussing “fostering to adopt”. During that session, I brought up every possible scenario I could think of that would prevent me from adopting and every challenge was met with “that’s not a problem.” Soon after, Dante came to live with me as a foster child. He was 13 years old and had been in the foster care system for about three years. I saw something in Dante that was special; more so than any of the other foster children that I had cared for. He had a desire to please others and had a caring heart. He had been through a lot in his short life and over time, Dante’s county and youth services caseworker could see that there was a deep connection forming between us. I was asked to consider the possibility of adoption with him and on June 30, 2015, I adopted Dante.”
- Marty Hoffmaster, New Wilmington office
The Jones Family Foster care adoption is an amazing experience. We have felt the joys, rewards, and challenges. The Bair Foundation was instrumental in helping with the process of adopting our first daughter. We appreciated the Christ-centered focus of the Bair Foundation. We have now been blessed with one son and two daughters through fostering and adoption. People tell us that our kids are lucky to have us but in reality, we are the lucky ones!
The Burns Family
Our journey began on September 4, 2015 when sweet Cecilia was placed with us. She was the most beautiful thing we had ever seen and instantly fell head over heels in love with her. There were 15 months of unknowns, tears, laughter, memories, and the deepest love we have ever experienced. She was worth the wait, worth the fear, she was worth it all. On November 23rd, she officially became ours. As long as the day took to get here, it was over so quickly. It was the most beautiful day, and there was so much peace and love for sweet Cecilia! We savored it. Every day with her is a blessing and a true gift from God.” - Carissa Burns, New Wilmington office
“All things work together for the good who love God.” - Romans 8:28
The Hogue Family Sunshine became a single foster parent with the Bair Foundation’s Altoona office in March of 2012. She had a desire to help children and families in need and was willing to foster medically needy children because of her background in pediatric nursing. In May, she received a call about Skye, a 2 year old boy who had been injured in an automobile accident. Skye had severe injuries including a traumatic brain injury and was currently in rehabilitation at a pediatric inpatient facility. He came home with Sunshine on August 1, 2012. Skye was in a wheelchair, receiving nutrition from a feeding tube, and speaking just a few words. With a great support team including Sunshine, Bair foster care specialists, county caseworkers, physicians, therapists, home health nurses, teachers, Sunshine’s parents, and friends from church, Skye has flourished. He works hard to do what most people take for granted. He is a resilient, energetic, determined boy with an engaging sense of humor. When Sunshine adopted Skye, it was a special day with many friends and family in attendance. Skye listened attentively during the hearing, and when the Judge gave Skye his new last name, Skye repeated his new name out loud, then shouted “woo-hoo” for all the courtroom to hear. Skye has brought incredible joy to Sunshine’s life, but foster care and adoption are not without difficult days. Skye has survived incredible trauma and will deal with the impact of that for all of his life. Sunshine finds peace in knowing that God is present during every moment to guide, comfort, and meet our every need.