WINCHESTER, VA - Thousands of children in the state of Virginia do not have loving homes but thanks to a new, statewide adoption campaign, there is a better chance they will be placed in homes.
Virginia Governor, Bob McDonnell launched the campaign to spread the urgency of helping children find homes.
Megan DeHaven, 17, is getting a new state with a new family. Before, she was not in the healthiest environment.
"There's always fighting going on in the house. Always drama, always got blamed for everything. I was always scared to go home," adds DeHaven.
She was so scared, she eventually decided to leave the situation. It became a big decision that did not come easily.
"I was scared. I didn't want my birth family to hate me," adds DeHaven, reminiscent of the bad memories.
It was a decision that ended up working out for the best. Megan was taken in by a loving family of whom she gets treated as if she was their own.
"She's happier. She's more outspoken in a positive way opposed to a negative way. She's really succeeding in school which was a struggle in the past," says Greta Cheroy, foster mother of Megan.
However, Cheroy says being a foster mother also has its own difficulties.
"Sometimes you're struggling with the balance between them wanting to return back to their birth family and you're always going to have that," says Cheroy.
Megan is however, not alone. There are 25 foster children available for adoption in the City of Winchester. There are 24 in Frederick County and around 4,000 in the state of Virginia.
"Children enter foster care because they are abused and neglected. It can be fore physical abuse, sexual abuse, it can be for neglect because their needs aren't met," says Jamie Linaburg, family service supervisor with Winchester Social Services.
Children up to 18 years old can be adopted but once they are past that age, their chances of being adopted can be low and in turn, it becomes a private adoption.
On the bright side, DeHaven wants all foster children to be patient because it is a stage she has endured as well.
"Just give it time. it's going to be okay no matter what happens," adds DeHaven.
It is a waiting process that has proven home really is where the heart is.
If you are interested in adopting and becoming a foster parent, click here for more information.
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