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      Older foster children hope to find forever homes

      On Saturday, the South Carolina Department of Social Services hosted a region-wide recruitment event in Florence to help find adoptive homes for older foster children ages 13-18.

      More than 90 foster children met with close to 70 potential parents from across South Carolina interested in adoption.

      Of the 602 children legally free for adoption right now in South Carolina, 369 of them are over the age of 18.

      The goal of this event was to help lower both of those numbers.

      "We need events like this to bring those children and these families together to meet each other and just hope some connections happen for these kids today," said Child Welfare Director, Sandra Sturkie.

      But those who've been through the adoption process know it's not always easy, so a panel of experts was available to answer questions these potential parents had.

      "When you bring somebody new into your family, whether its a child you give birth to or one that you choose to bring into your family, there are adjustments that have to be made," Sturkie said.

      As foster children grow older, Sturkie says adoption becomes a two-way street.

      "We want the kids to mingle with these families and say you know what, I think I'm interested in them. It's not just the other way around," Sturkie said.

      For more information on adoption, click here.