Changing the Journey: Ellie’s story

Posted on May 21, 2020


Born into a family in which she suffered years of abuse, Ellie missed four years of school before being placed in foster care as a teenager.

At age 19, Ellie was adopted through the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption’s Wendy’s Wonderful Kids® program. Having the support and encouragement of a permanent family made a life-changing difference for Ellie. She became more focused on her classwork…more confident…more hopeful about her future. This spring, she was even honored as “Student of the Semester” at her school.

“When we met her, she didn’t think she would live past 18,” says Ellie’s mom, Shawn. “Now, we have a kid who is planning on college and wanting to go out and conquer the world.”

Even though she hasn’t decided yet what she wants to study in college, Ellie is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. “She’s excited to figure it out,” says Shawn.

An Update to Ellie’s Story

Pictured: Ellie

Now 23, Ellie has started college classes and would like to explore becoming a lawyer or Guardian Ad Litem, advocating for children in foster care.

“Family can change everything,” explains Ellie. “One day you are alone, and the next you are holding the whole world in your hand because someone loves you.”

Ellie’s story has a happy outcome, but thousands of children are still waiting to be adopted from foster care in the United States. You can help. Give now to find a loving, permanent family for every child.

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