DCCH Celebrates 150th Adoption Over 17 Years
Ft. Mitchell-based DCCH Center for Children and Families announced the finalization of its 150th adoption, coincidentally in National Adoption Awareness month.
“What a blessing and privilege it is for us here at DCCH to be part of the process of bringing long-term hope, stability, and love to these amazing kids,” said Bob Wilson, DCCH executive director.
DCCH first began a therapeutic foster care program in 1999 – recruiting, training, and supporting families willing to open their home to foster children with a history of trauma. The program trains families in Trauma Informed Care and provides case management to support successful outcomes for both the child and family.
DCCH’s Adoption Program was licensed in 2001 and brought to fruition in 2003 when the program’s first child, Cory Klosinski, achieved his dream of stability with a family when his adoption was finalized on May 28, 2003.
Over 17 years, DCCH has grown from the first adoption. This month, DCCH will celebrate adoption number 150, which is scheduled to be finalized in Kenton County Family Court on November 23.
Recently, DCCH Adoption/Foster Care Director Ron Bertsch met with Cory to reconnect after 17 years. Cory is now 31 years old and their meeting date coincidentally fell on his birthday. Birthdays are something he does not celebrate, as Cory said he never thought he would live this long. Cory was 11, just shy of his 12th birthday when placed with Barb and Jerry Klosinski, his foster-to-adopt parents. After 18 months, his adoption was finalized and his life changed forever.
Today, Cory is a businessman, working for himself as a real estate investor.
Cory served his country in the United States Army. He was stationed at Fort Wainwright, Alaska and spent a year in Afghanistan earning the Army Achievement, Good Conduct and his most proud, Combat Spurs medals for rescuing a group of Cavalry Scouts. Unfortunately, Cory suffered significant wounds from a battle strike, but is alive, functioning, and grateful.
Cory is an athlete, playing all kind of sports, but his favorites are baseball and ice hockey. He’s back on the skates, and also enjoys building and racing cars. He is an expert marksman who worked as a long-range Stryker brigade combat team member within the military, and still finds time to enjoy shooting competitions. Four-wheeling and video games are two developed while in his adoptive home.
Cory is back in Kentucky after meeting his wife in Alaska. Now father of a set of twin toddlers, a boy and girl, he shows deep pride in sharing photos and videos of these two beautiful children. He is close with his mom and dad and two brothers, sisters-in-law, and four nieces and nephews. His adoptive family always helped him keep a relationship with his biological siblings and that meant so much to him. He has since started to create a relationship with his birth mother and father too, which comes with its own set of emotions.
Cory has never forgotten some of the lessons learned while in DCCH’s Residential Treatment Center. He credits Doug Harlow, then a young childcare worker and now Residential Director, for helping change his life. Doug’s job was to be the surrogate parent for the 7 boys and girls sharing that apartment unit. Doug, like all of DCCH’s direct-care staff, fulfilled all the duties of a parent figure. At bedtime, when checking on Cory before lights out, Cory recalled the routine fondly. He said Doug would come in and say a prayer with him, and then read a poem. “Never lose your dream” is a line within a poem titled “A World Without Dreams,” recited nightly while Cory was living at DCCH. He remembers this fondly and now shares it with his own children
As of November 2, 2020, there are 9,332 Kentucky children in out-of-home care – 1,282 in Northern Kentucky alone. are in the Northern Kentucky region.
“We are blessed to be celebrating 150 adoptions since the inception of our program – especially during National Adoption Awareness Month," Therapeutic Foster Care & Adoption Director Ron Berstch said. "The need is great and DCCH relies on loving families willing to search their hearts and open their home to adopt a child. We have an especially significant need right now because child abuse and neglect do not pause for a pandemic.”