MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Wednesday night is a big night on CBS especially for those with big hearts.
The 15th annual “A Home For The Holidays with Celine Dion” will be broadcast on CBS4. The heart-warming special raises awareness and celebrates the joy of adoption and foster care.
The inspirational stories of these American families are enhanced with performances by some of today’s most popular artists including Dion, Ne-Yo, Chris Young and others.
The musical performances will accompany the heartwarming stories, which are introduced by celebrities who have their own adoption experiences or are involved with children’s issues.
The stories highlight the remarkable American children and families involved in this rewarding process.
Gerber Family (Las Vegas)
When Tammy Gerber volunteered at a summer camp which brought together separated foster children, she had no idea that she and her husband, Jason, would soon become the proud parents of a sibling group of three. “I noticed Josh, Kyla and Skyler right away and fell in love with them. They were 12, 9 and 8 and had been separated in foster care,” said Tammy.” “I missed my siblings every day,” said Sklyer, the youngest. “When my wife called me on the last night of camp and told me about Kyla and her brothers, I couldn’t imagine them living without each other,” said Jason. “The day we were adopted was a dream come true,” said Kyla. “We came to camp that summer because we were always separated. And little did we know that our mom was right there next to us,” said Josh.
Cabaccang Family (Los Angeles)
Nicole and Fernando Cabaccang had been married six years when they were inspired to adopt after watching stories from “A Home for the Holidays.” “We loved raising our daughter Kayla and when we saw the heartbreaking lives that foster children have, we knew that we wanted to adopt,” said Nicole. In 2009, the couple received a call about a 2-year-old girl and her younger brother who needed emergency placement. “When Karly and Kai arrived, they didn’t speak very much. Kai barely even babbled,” said Fernando. “The children needed the care of a loving family and once they had that, their personalities began to shine,” said Nicole. “Having a younger brother and sister is awesome,” said 9-year-old Kayla. “So many foster children need a permanent home and all you have to do is take that first step,” said Nicole.
Morris Family (Washington, D.C.)
“Never in a thousand years would I have thought that I’d be where I am now. It all feels like one big dream,” said 20-year-old Thomas. Placed in foster care when he was in sixth grade, Thomas lived in 11 different foster homes and was at risk of aging out. “I felt so alone growing up. It wasn’t until I met my best friend, Dawson, that I felt like I had someone in my life,” he continued. “When I learned that Thomas was in foster care, it broke my heart. Thomas was like a second son to me,” said Dawson’s mom, Joi Morris. In 2010, Joi adopted Thomas. “Both my sons are in college now and I am so proud to be their mom.” This summer, Thomas interned on Capitol Hill for the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. “I want to be a voice for foster children. Being adopted changed my life and it doesn’t matter how young or old the child is – that love will last a lifetime.”
Sullivan Family (Los Angeles)
“When Patrick and I decided to adopt, we thought we wanted a baby,” said Beth. “Initially, I was hesitant to adopt an older child, but that all changed once we met Iris,” said Patrick. Just four days before Christmas, the Sullivans received a call about a 7-year-old girl who needed a home for the holidays because her adoption placement had failed. “Iris was so sweet and we fell in love with her. She had moved through five foster homes and four schools in just two years,” said Beth. “Foster care was sad,” said Iris. “It was a lot of moving around, and I worried, ‘Will I ever be with a real family?’” The Sullivans adopted Iris this October and today she is excelling in second grade. “I’m a Sullivan now, and Santa will always know where to find me!” said Iris.
Currently, there are more than 400,000 children in foster care in the United States. The inspirational “Children Waiting” segment gives voice to these forgotten children by creating an intimate portrait of their hopes, their dreams and their wish for a “Forever Family.”
The special is presented in association with the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and the Children’s Action Network. Wendy’s founder, Dave Thomas, who was adopted, established the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption in 1992. It is dedicated to dramatically increasing the adoptions of children in the United States foster care system.
The Children’s Action Network was founded in 1990 by leaders in the entertainment industry in order to harness the power of the entertainment media on behalf of children. The special is a part of CAN’s National Adoption Campaign to raise awareness of the joys of adopting and to find homes for the children who are waiting.