NORRISTOWN — Nov. 7 was National Adoption Day and seven families celebrated by making their new family members official.

The courtroom was packed with families who had all come to the Montgomery County Courthouse to celebrate Adoption Day and officially and legally welcome their newest family members.

As the ceremony began, the Montgomery County commissioners presented a proclamation marking November as National Adoption Awareness Month in the county.

"National Adoption Day is a collective national effort to raise awareness of the 123,000 children in foster care waiting to find permanent, loving families," said commissioners' Chairwoman Valerie Arkoosh. "National Adoption Day was started in 2000 and since its inception, over 75,000 children have been adopted on this special day."

In Montgomery County, 112 adoptions total have been granted in 2019 and 41 foster care adoptions. Over 350 children are in foster care in Montgomery County, according to Arkoosh. 

On Thursday, seven families welcomed 10 children as Common Pleas Court Judges Lois E. Murphy and Cheryl L. Austin approved and finalized the adoptions.

"We have the privilege, Judge Austin and I, of presiding over adoption hearings all through the year, not just today. It is always a special and uplifting time for us to acknowledge the families and recognize the hard work that goes into parenting, the hard work that goes into preparing for this day and the commitment that parents are making to adopt a child into their home," said Murphy. 

Smiles and tears of joy could be seen from some parents and siblings as the judges formally approved the adoptions and children received an adoption certificate and balloon.

Families were invited to enjoy light refreshments outside the courtroom following the ceremony and hearings and were given a chance to take a new family photo. 

"Adoption is a noble and honorable way to form a family and the children who are finding adoptive homes today have been searching for permanence and longing for permanence and have found permanence with wonderful families. All of us in Montgomery County are grateful not only to the caseworkers from the Office of Children and Youth but to the lawyers, paralegals, clerk's office staff and all the participants who helped bring these families together and unite these families. We hope that we can be part of launching these families on a lifelong journey filled with joy," said Murphy.

Anyone interested in learning more about foster care or adoption can visit www.montcopa.org/712/Adoption-Foster-Care

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