A picture is worth a thousand words

Portraits in the Heart Gallery highlight need for local families to adopt

The struggle to find permanent homes and families for children without them is highlighted by the Capital Region Heart Gallery.

The Heart Gallery's opening reception on Friday, Jan. 21, at the Delack Guild Room in Proctors featured portraits of smiling children waiting to be adopted. The gallery focuses on older children, from 13 to 18 years old and even up to 21 years old. There are 10 young people from Schenectady County featured.

We are very honored to host the Heart Gallery, and we are very proud to [host] this once again, said Susan Savage, D-Niskayuna, chairwoman of the Schenectady County Legislature. "This is a wonderful exhibit, and it's important because our goal here is to find loving, permanent and safe homes for these great kids that you see in the photos that are around the room. These are just some of the children that are currently available for adoption."

In Schenectady County, there are more than 80 children seeking adoption, said Savage. She said the county knows how important it is for a child to have a "forever family." She asked attendees to reach out to their friends, families and neighbors to help the county find homes for children, older youths and sibling groups seeking adoption.

"We know that families are the most important thing that we have in our society and everybody deserves to be a part of a family," said Savage. "I thank the people who work in our Department of Social Services for their very, very hard work."

Lori Pirrone, adoption supervisor for the county's Department of Social Services, shared a letter she received recently from a local family that adopted a child. While the adopted child, Sam, faces medical conditions that can make caring for him difficult at times, his mother said she doesn't regret welcoming him into her life. Conditions he faces are a bipolar disorder, reactive detachment disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

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