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Valdosta Daily Times: Adoption changes children’s futures

November is National Adoption Month.

Children from across the state of Georgia are in need of caring families to adopt them.

The state Division of Family and Children Services describes adoption, unlike foster care, as a permanent, “social and legal process that creates a new family, giving adopted children the same rights and benefits as those who are born into a family. Adoption requires an unconditional commitment by parents to meet the physical, emotional, medical, psychological and social needs of their child.”

Most of the children in need of adoption are in the state’s foster care, or temporary family, program.

Most of the children in foster care have endured some form of abuse or neglect and because of that some may have medical, emotional and/or behavioral needs, according to the department.

“Children in foster care come from all racial and ethnic groups, most are school aged and have brothers or sisters they need to be placed with,” according to a past DFCS statement. “There are also a high number of teenagers. Most of the children needing adoptive homes are members of sibling groups needing to be placed together, are older, have a diagnosed physical, mental or emotional disability.”

There are hundreds of children across the state in need of a temporary or permanent home.

DFCS has said most of the children came from difficult situations into the foster-care system.

The department explained in many cases, when a child is available for adoption, parents have voluntarily surrendered parental rights, but in other cases, parental rights were terminated by the court system due to abuse, neglect or abandonment.

Many of the children, as a result, have special needs.

Adoption is a long process and requires a lot of pre-qualifying.

People interested can call (877) 210-KIDS (5437) for additional information.

More information on children needing an adoptive family can be found at www.itsmyturnnow.dhs.ga.gov.

The right family, with the right child, at the right time can result in the most amazing outcomes.

Brunswick News: Vince Dooley was a great coach and person

The passage of time can be cruel as it takes away our heroes from generations past. Many people are feeling that today as Georgia and the college football world mourns the loss of legendary Bulldog coach Vince Dooley.

Dooley died Oct. 28 at 90 years old. It was on the eve of Georgia’s biggest annual rivalry game with Florida. There were plenty of tributes to Dooley during the day Saturday during the various college football shows and games.

Georgia players and coaches, no doubt going through Saturday’s game with heavy hearts, lived up to Dooley’s legacy with a 42-20 victory over the Gators despite looking a little sluggish at times in second half.

Georgia coach Kirby Smart couldn’t help but wonder what Dooley would have thought.

“Such an ambassador for our program and all of college football,” Smart said after the game according to the Associated Press. “I know if he was looking down on that one, he would have enjoyed the first half. I don’t know that he would have enjoyed the second one.”

Dooley had plenty of success in his own right against the Gators. The coach was 17-7-1 against Florida, a stretch that includes perhaps the most famous game in the series. That would be the 1980 game that saw Buck Belue hit Lindsay Scott for a 93-yard touchdown pass in the final minutes to pull off a miraculous comeback.

Dooley was more than just a football coach at Georgia. He also served as the university’s athletic director while he was football coach and after he retired. Current athletic director Josh Brooks said Dooley played a big role in how much Georgia athletics have grown the last couple of decades.

What Dooley will always be remembered for by many is his stewardship of the Bulldog football program. He went 201-77-10 at Georgia from 1964-1988, leading the Bulldogs to 20 bowl games, six SEC championships and the 1980 national championship.

Perhaps the most telling thing about Dooley’s legacy is how respected he was across the entire college football landscape. Everyone from Alabama head coach Nick Saban to scores of former players and the journalists who covered Dooley had noting but good things to say not only about Vince Dooley the coach, but Vince Dooley the man as well.

We send our condolences to Dooley’s family, friends and the Georgia fans across the world mourning the coach’s death. We were grateful to have him as part of so many of our Saturdays.

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