A lot has changed since Dawson and Dalton were placed in foster care as young boys.
Dalton, who has cerebral palsy and other medical diagnoses, often did not receive the care he needed. At 10 years old, he weighed just 44 pounds. Dawson worried constantly about his older brother.
“I was always told not to touch Dalton because I would hurt him,” Dawson recalled. “I was scared that we would be separated.”
With so much instability and uncertainty in his life, Dawson struggled in school.
Thankfully, Dawson and Dalton’s journey changed when they met their Wendy’s Wonderful Kids adoption recruiter, Rachel.
Through its Wendy’s Wonderful Kids program, the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption supports the hiring of recruiters, like Rachel from Adopt America Network, who are dedicated to finding families for children who are most at risk of aging out of foster care. That includes teenagers, children with special needs and siblings, like Dawson and Dalton.
Rachel was relentless in her search for the right family who would adopt Dawson and Dalton together. With support from Rachel, Robbin and Steven agreed to open their hearts and home to the brothers. After more than three years in foster care, Dalton and Dawson finally had the forever family they had always dreamed of.
Today, Dawson and Dalton are thriving with the care and support of their forever family. Dalton has gained weight, loves music and lights up when his mom walks in the room. Dawson has excelled in school, is playing football and dreams of becoming a doctor to help children like his brother.
And through it all, Dawson and Dalton’s bond has never wavered.
“Honestly, there isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for Dalton,” said Dawson. “I just love being there with him.”
Robbin added, “I couldn’t begin to imagine Dawson and Dalton not together. I know that Dawson is, and will always be, the person that he is because he got the opportunity to keep his brother. It’s half of him. That’s his heart.”
Fortunately, Dawson and Dalton’s story has a happy outcome. But thousands of children are still waiting to be adopted from foster care in the United States right now. If you are interested in adoption or looking to learn more about the process, explore the Foundation’s free, step-by-step guide.