Horry County families celebrate as South Carolina recognizes National Adoption Day

Grand Strand

HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — November is National Adoption Month, and South Carolina is recognizing Nov. 22 as National Adoption Day.

Inside an Horry County courtroom, joy and relief were seen on families’ faces once the adoptions were finalized and they were officially able to call the children their own.

“It’s kind of its ups and downs, but it’s an awesome time, and now she’s officially with us for good,” Tim Rivito, one adoptive parent, said.

Tim and Amy Rivito are one of the many families who celebrate the newest addition to their family.  After three years they finally get to call their daughter Zoe, their own.

“There’s like an elephant that’s actually on you all day long, as it’s the best way I can summarize it, and so today, that weight is lifted and it’s just beautiful,” Amy said.

With 51 children scheduled to be adopted across the state, seven of those cases were held in the Horry County Courthouse. 

“This is the only happy day we have in family court. A lot of times we see the breaking up of families in family court, so to have adoption day and to see families come together and see the communities step up and take care of these children, I think it has a huge impact on our community,” Melissa Buckhannon, Horry County Family Court Judge, said.

Adrienne Wingate is an adoption administrator with Pee Dee Region Adoptions. She said it’s a blessing to see the children transition to a forever family. She thinks National Adoption Day helps raise awareness.

“I think it’s very important because people are just not aware of the number of children that are in the foster care system,” Wingate said. “But we want to shed light because every child is there to have a family that he can call their own.”

Wingate said the youth age group is the most difficult to find placement for and that they’re hoping to find more families interested in adopting to prevent them from aging out of foster care.

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