Agencies raise awareness of adoption during month of November

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EAU CLAIRE, BLOOMER Wis. (WEAU) - November is known as a month for giving thanks for things we have in our life. It’s also a time for adoption agencies to raise awareness of the need to give kids in foster care and up for adoption a good home.

The U.S. State Department says there will be more than 9,000 adoptions in the United States this year alone. We talked with one of those families that says they were able to start their dream of a family thanks to adoption.

“It was love at first sight. Allahna was the most beautiful thing that we had ever seen,” Michelle Ritter said.

Michelle and Bob Ritter say after they were married, adoption was always in the back of their mind as an option.

“We just kind of waited to see where the path lead us and after a few years the path led us to adoption,” Michelle Ritter said.

The Ritters say their journey into adoption started off slow.

“They say when women are pregnant they have that nine months of chaos and preparation and when your adopting you're doing the same things except you're doing it in paperwork,” Ritter said.

Paperwork is a process that Lutheran Social Services knows well. They help adoptive families through the process, and they say one of the key things is patience.

“Usually one of the more difficult things in any adoption is that waiting period,” Nikki Brooks with LSS said.

Brooks says after paperwork and background checks are complete its up to a birth parent to make a final decision.

“The waiting time is always different. Every family differs, some families might wait three months some might wait two and a half to three years,” Brooks added.

For the Ritter family the process from start to finish took around a year, but they say it was well worth the wait.

“I think Allahna had me wrapped around her little finger pretty early on,” Bob Ritter said.

“I looked at Allahna and i just started crying i knew she would be ours forever,” Michelle Ritter said.

Lutheran Social Services says they offer services for birth parents and families looking at adoption as an option. We have a link to their contact information under related links.

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