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Ricky, age 12, was in Tennessee’s foster care system for seven years — more than half of his life — waiting to find his forever home with his forever family. Diagnosed with Sanfilippo syndrome — a rare, genetic condition that primarily affects the brain and spinal cord and results in behavioral, intellectual and mobility issues — Ricky’s likelihood of being adopted was slim, if not nil. 

But Childhelp staff is undeterred and determined, and after 2,861 days with Childhelp, Ricky is finally home. Pat Brown adopted Ricky last year. And he had plenty of siblings to welcome him home: Ricky is the ninth child Pat adopted. He’s not a special needs child, Pat says. “He is a child — every child has special needs.”

Ricky is one of many. In 2023, Childhelp’s Tennessee Foster Care Program facilitated the adoption process for 17 children and reunited 16 children with their biological families. Without the compassion and generous support of our donors, none of this would be possible.