Growing families celebrated in Mecklenburg County on National Adoption Day

MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. — More than 100 growing families celebrated Adoption Day on Saturday in Mecklenburg County.

The county recognized each family that has adopted in the last year.

Each family received formal adoption papers and joined in the celebration.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to celebrate the families who have stepped up to open their hearts to children,” said Peggy Eagan, director for the Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services.

Eagan said the need for foster families is huge. There are more than 545 children in foster care in Mecklenburg County alone.

“There are children who still need a home,” Eagan said. “At this time, Thanksgiving and the holidays, what better thing to think about?”

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After a long wait, the Fraley family is entering this holiday season extra thankful, as their family is now complete.

Justin and Annette Fraley adopted their two daughters after the girls were placed in their home while in foster care.

“It was definitely worth it,” Justin Fraley said. “It has its ups and downs, but in the end, it was worth it. They deserve a good home.”

The Fraleys joined other families Saturday, celebrating the same joyous occasion of growing their family.

“Every kid deserves a home, a loving home and not have to worry about it whether they’re going to have food or shelter or if their parents love them or not,” father Justin Fraley said.

Tony and Becky Santoro just added little Ava to their family and encourage others interested in becoming foster parents or adopting to take the same leap of faith.

“There’s a need for families who have the capacity to open up their hearts and homes for these kids,” Tony Santoro said.

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