Individuals can be found around the world working tirelessly to give children a voice. Through their efforts they change lives one family and one child at a time. Some of these children have been abused or neglected. Some have been exposed to highly unfavorable living conditions, and many have spent a good portion of their lives in foster care. They long for a permanent home and family that will love, support and encourage them. They rely on individuals to advocate for them by increasing exposure and awareness. Through the efforts of those working on their behalf they are adopted and thrive as a part of a loving family.
A recent story in the news touched my heart deeply and has undoubtedly had a similar effect on many others. It is a story of one of these exceptional individuals who has dedicated a portion of her professional career to children in need of permanent families. Since 1989, news anchor Gloria Campos has featured a child each week as a part of her Wednesday’s Child segment. It is estimated that nearly 70 percent of the children she has featured have been successfully adopted. She recently retired after 30 years with WFAA in Dallas, Texas. During Gloria’s last week on the air WFAA highlighted the story of Ke’onte. He was featured on Gloria’s Wednesday’s Child segment in 2005. A darling young man with a great karate kick, Ke’onte was adopted, but unfortunately the adoption did not work out and he once again found himself in need of a family. For the first time in her experience doing Wednesday’s Child, Gloria chose to highlight a child a second time. It was now 2007 and Ke’onte was 10 years old. Once again he spent time with Gloria, this time in an arcade. That night Scott and Carol Cook were watching the nightly news and saw Gloria’s feature with Ke’onte. They knew that he was meant to be theirs. He is now 14 and thriving as part of the Cook family. He feels extremely grateful to Gloria for the role she played in helping him find his way to his family. He realizes that the fantastic life he enjoys today would not have been a reality without the efforts and persistence Gloria showed not only once, but twice in finding him a home.
As Ke’onte surprises Gloria on air at WFAA her tears are evidence of her continued love for the children she has helped. She truly delights in seeing their happiness. As her fellow news anchor is complimenting her on all she has done to help Ke’onte and other children throughout the years Gloria is quick to say, “He helped me too” In an article published as WFAA bid farewell to Gloria, she said, regarding the many children she was privileged to meet over the years, “You know those kids gave me more than I could ever give them,’
I feel an immense amount of gratitude for Gloria, and the many other individuals like her who work tirelessly for the benefit of children in need of permanent homes and families. I admire their efforts and applaud the work that they do. Their actions are far reaching and will influence generations.
You will not regret the time spent watching this clip. Enjoy the beautiful connection between Ke’onte and his parents, but also the connection shared by Ke’onte and Gloria. I hope that you feel as inspired as I do to reach out and perhaps do a little more to advocate for children searching for their families.