Brenda Hottal got her first taste of adoptive parenting 12 years ago when she and her husband become guardians of her grand-nephew Landon. Landon eventually became Brenda’s adopted son, and after Brenda’s husband died, she and Landon decided they wanted to welcome foster children into their home.
When a local adoption agency approached Brenda about caring for a sibling set of two brothers and their sister, she was hesitant, but after taking them in, she had a change of heart.
“I knew right away that taking care of three children was going to be hard but once I got to know them, I decided that mine was going to be the last foster home they would ever live in,” she said.
Brenda is now the legal mother of James, 14, and Michael, 16, and the legal guardian of Alia, 17. And while being a single parent to four teenagers (while working full-time) is hard, she wouldn’t have it any other way.
“My life was pretty empty before they came into my life. I really can't imagine not having them here. I receive so much joy just watching them mature and make their way into adulthood,” she said.
“Hopefully someday they'll look back and say that my guidance has helped them to be better.”
Brenda and her family illustrate why Sacramento County and local foster-adoptive agencies celebrate National Adoption Month, held every November to raise awareness about the need for adoptive families.
According to federal statistics, more than 122,000 children and youth are waiting to be adopted and are at risk of aging out of foster care without a permanent family. In Sacramento County, at least 224 children and teens are awaiting their forever families.
The Heart Gallery of Sacramento
will also celebrate the day with an informational event from noon to 1 p.m. The Zoom meeting ID is 830-1145-7525.
Sacramento County joins organizing sponsor Stanford Sierra Youth as well as A Better Life Children’s Services, the California Alliance of Child and Family Service, the California Department of Social Services, Koinonia Family Services and Uplift Family Services in supporting National Adoption Month.