More than 450 Children Adopted Across Florida in November

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Tallahassee, FL -- December 1, 2011 --

In November, 460 children statewide became part of a permanent, loving family. Throughout the month, the Florida Department
of Children and Families and our many community partners celebrated National Adoption Month by holding dozens of community group adoption ceremonies.

These adoptions included 44 sibling groups, including four groups of
four siblings, three groups of five siblings and one group of seven siblings all being adopted together. The final number for this year is up slightly from 450 children adopted during November last year.

"DCF often sees the worst of society, but this month we saw the best,"
said Secretary David Wilkins. "I saw the joy on these children's faces when the judge announced they had a new family. We are excited that so many children will now have a permanent home."

The state's Explore Adoption website saw heavy traffic during November. There were more than 300,000 page views at, up from about 60,000 in November 2010. In addition, more than 400 inquiries came in from people interesting in adopting some of the teens and sibling groups currently available. Specific requests were made for information on 23 of the 30 children featured during Novembers "30 Days of Amazing Children" campaign.

To celebrate the month's accomplishments, Cyndee Odom, Director of the Governor's Office of Adoption and Child Protection, highlighted the efforts of Explore Adoption and the Heart Galleries statewide in a new video that is premiering today. Please watch it here:

The Department of Environmental Protection also provided free passes to state parks for all the new families celebrating adoption in November.

"It is so important for these children to have parents to love and guide
them," Odom said. "First Lady Ann Scott is committed to recruiting
forever families for Florida's children who are available for adoption."

Florida is a national model for successful adoptions. During the past
four years, the state has found homes for nearly 14,000 foster care children; more than 3,000 of those were adopted last year alone. Over the past year, Florida has also significantly reduced the number of children in foster care available for adoption without an identified family.

Adoption is not something that only happens in November. There are still about 800 children in Florida waiting for that family that is just
perfect for them. For more information about adoption of foster children in Florida, please visit or check out our Twitter feed at @ExploreAdoption.

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