CASPER, WY - A Wyoming group is coming together to help families in the adoption process.
Wyoming Foster Care and Adoption Alliance members have all had experience with adopted children and this weekend they will help other families come together.
"Adoption Alliance represents a pretty varied group. Foster parents, there’s parents that have adopted internationally. There are parents that have adopted domestically. We’ve got a pretty big variety," said WYAFC Alliance Coordinator Megan Lockwood.
The group does more than pair children with loving homes.
"We're going to be able to award a grant to a family from Gillette this year that's in the process of adopting a child from the Congo,” said Lockwood. “They will be at the conference. All of the proceeds from the conference are going to go to benefit their adoption."
Hosting programs are available for the kids, to give them hope and a chance at family.
"This is an incredible opportunity just to show these kids who are stuck away just the power of the unity and love that a family can have. Good, bad, ugly, were still a family," said Adoptive Mother Kelly Barnes.
Some kids age out and are kicked out of their orphanage.
"At 14 years old, no place to live, won’t be able to work, won’t be able to get a job. This hosting program is going to be his last chance to get a family and be able to have a life,” said Kelly Barnes.
Adopting is a labor of love, but it's still a hard process, even for parents.
"There was still the fear of the unknown, of the parents trying to get her back but it didn’t happen and were thankful every day,” said Adoptive Father Dan Barnes. “Now we talk as a family and even our older kids say I don’t even know what life would be without her."
But with a little help from groups like Adoption Alliance, families are formed.
"When you open your heart up like that its tough, it tough to trust, its tough. There was a couple hiccups but for the most part we had one of the easiest adoption you could probably every have," said Dan Barnes.
The group will hold a conference Saturday at 9:00AM at the Casper College Physical Science building.
The event will have speakers from around the world to share their experiences in adopted homes.