OKLAHOMA – There are 9,900 children under DHS custody. According to Oklahoma fosters, half will be reunited with their families, but the other half are stuck in state care waiting for a home.
Those are the children we feature on ‘A Place To Call Home.’ There are many success stories and some heartbreaking ones, as well.
We want to give you an update on some of the more than 130 children we’ve featured.
It’s been two years of more than one hundred segments. We’ve gotten splashed, fed exotic animals and flown high in the air all for one purpose – to showcase children in need of a good home.
Take for example Dareis, a teen who spent half of his life under state care.
An anonymous viewer gave him a wonderful opportunity to go to the Thunder game and get his own jersey. Last year, Dareis was adopted by loving parents.
Terry and Matthew are not just brothers. They’re best friends.
“I think the biggest challenge I had was when me and my brother got separated in different homes. That was a hard struggle,” Mathew said.
We featured the two last year at Top Golf. We’re happy to report the siblings have officially been adopted.
Terry, Matthew and Dareis are among 34 children who’ve been adopted after being featured on ‘A Place to Call Home.’ More than 20 others are in a six-month trial period before final adoption.
Just last year, Oklahoma saw the highest number of adoptions since 1998 with more than 2,200 children finding a permanent home.
One of those children is Sarah, a teen we featured two years ago. She told us she loved to sing and dance but she didn’t have a family to watch her on stage.
“I’ve never been with a real family, so I don’t know how one acts or is or anything,” she said in her first interview.
Just before Christmas in 2015, her high school teacher overheard Sarah talking about wishing she had someone to spend the holiday with.
“When I heard her talking to her friend, it kind of broke my heart a little bit. So, I went to my husband and was like ‘this is what we’re going to do,” said Sarah Eaton, her adoptive mom.
She came over on Christmas Eve and never left.
Then, last October, the judge made it official.
She didn’t have to go back to a group home. She found a mom, dad and four siblings.
“I know my true self now,” said young Sarah Reel-Eaton. “When I was at the home, I wanted to be someone else but, now, since I have a family and everything, I know what I want to be and who my true self is and I don’t have to act like somebody else.”
She said she’s living her dream and hopes other children will find what she has, which is a permanent place to call home.
Visit www.okdhs.org for more information on adopting a child or call 405-767-2955.
‘A Place to Call Home’ is sponsored by NBC Oklahoma.