27 children adopted in time for Christmas - WKRN News 2

27 children adopted in time for Christmas

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -

Attorneys and case managers with the Department of Children's Services have been working around the clock to make dreams come true for almost 30 children in the Knoxville area.

According to a report by our sister station WATE-TV, 27 foster children were adopted on Monday.

Laura Mitchell has been waiting 19 months for the paperwork to be complete to adopt her seven-year-old son Jacob.

"I can now say he is officially adopted today and he is officially Jacob Andrew Mitchell," she said.

Mitchell's close friends and family were at the courthouse to celebrate the adoption.

"It is just the most perfect Christmas gift ever. We have waited so long. Never really actually dreamed we would have a court date really by the end of the year, let alone two days before Christmas, so it really is the best Christmas gift ever," said Mitchell.

The new mother works full time, is a foster parent, and is now a single mom to her son Jacob. 

As a foster parent, Mitchell has had 19 children live with her for different periods of time.

"What I found was the need was so great for children who needed homes. They needed someone to love them. They need somewhere to be safe and protected," said Mitchell.

According to Tiffani Debord, an employee who specializes in foster care and adoptions at the Helen Ross McNabb Center, there are 7,000 children in Tennessee who need to be adopted.

Dobord says the state pays for most of the domestic adoptions.

Although a significant amount of research and paperwork is done before approving an adoption, Debord says giving a child a forever home is worth the wait.

"The kids, just seeing their little faces when they finally feel accepted and they know that there's a family that loves them that much. It's wonderful seeing them just become one," said Debord.

Mitchell added she is excited to start her life with her new son Jacob.

"He is just the most special little boy ever. He has the biggest smile, the biggest heart, the most grateful heart of any child I've ever met. I fell in love with him and am glad to call him my son," she explained.

Jacob was asked what his favorite part about his new mother is, to which he replied, "That I get to spend time with her."

If you are interested in fostering or adopting a child, call the Helen Ross McNabb Center at 865-544-500 or visit their Web site.

*WATE-TV contributed to this report.

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