Thursday, November 17, 2011

Angels in Adoption

We're privileged this week to share a story from one of Iowa's 2011 Angels in Adoption nominees, the McIntyre family!

Angels in Adoption is a terrific program from the Congressional Coalition for Adoption Institute, which allows members of Congress to honor selfless individuals, organizations and families who have made extraordinary contributions for children who needing loving homes.

Past recipients include some pretty good company, such as Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy, First Lady Laura Bush, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Kristin Chenoweth, Rhea Perlman, Bruce Willis, Al Roker, Muhammad Ali, Patti LaBelle, Jane Seymour, Henry Winkler and CBS Studios.

Learn more about one of our Iowa nominees and their unique experience celebrating adoption on Capitol Hill!

Making a difference as the McIntyre family

Dee McIntyre first learned about foster care as a nurse in southwest Iowa. She was on her evening shift one night when a six-year-old boy was waiting in the emergency room for his relatives to arrive.

Dee’s heart went out to him, and she immediately wondered if she could take him home to their family for the night until his family arrived. When she was told that she would need to be a licensed foster family to care for him, it sparked her awareness of the ongoing need for foster and adoptive homes in her area.

In 2002, Dee and her husband Ken received their foster care license. Fast forward nine years, and they have now adopted four children from foster care – Aubrey, 11; Dillon, 10; Sam, 9; and Abby, 8.

In October, Dee, Dillon and Sam traveled to Washington, D.C., as one of Iowa’s “Angels in Adoption” nominees, nominated by Rep. Steve King (R-IA).

The family participated in a breakfast and resource fair, a bus tour of the Capitol and other historic sites, an evening gala and many other events. A highlight, Dee said, was meeting former foster youth who were now interning at the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.

“The entire trip was so uplifting,” Dee said. “I just want to share it with everyone. You hear a lot of difficult stories sometimes, and it was so incredible to see former foster youth who had made it and were having success as young adults.”

They've got our votes! Sam and Dillon pause in front of the White House.
Her young sons, Dillon and Sam, were proud to be in attendance, she said.

“Everywhere we went they were excited to tell people they were in Washington, D.C. for an ‘adoption award,’ whether it was the bus driver or a doorman,” Dee said with a laugh.

Their journey didn’t end there. For November’s National Adoption Month, Dee, Dillon and Sam shared their Angels in Adoption adventures with a foster and adoptive parent support group in Southwest Iowa.

And that’s only one example of how many other families across Iowa are spreading the word this November, all sharing their hearts and voices to make a difference.

Thanks to the McIntyres for sharing their experiences with us, and congratulations to all the families who will be adopting at Iowa's six National Adoption Day events this weekend!


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