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Sep 22, 2013 1:30 AM by Sam Salzwedel

State recruits volunteers to showcase foster kids

TUCSON - State workers are recruiting volunteers to showcase foster children.

Professional photographers took pictures of 33 kids at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort Saturday. They will be posted online with their biographies.

Herbert and Chareetta Hogan found 4 sisters on the website and decided to adopt them.

"Easier said than done," Chareetta Hogan said. "But with a lot of praying and outside resources, anything is possible."

Later, they found out the girls had a brother. They have adopted before and wanted to adopt him also.

"I just know how important it is to keep the children together," Hogan said, "Because my oldest son has 8 other brothers and sisters. And I try hard to keep them involved with each other."

About 14,000 kids are in the care of Child Protective Services, and 1,500 need permanent homes. That number is expected to increase 7 to 8 percent the next 2 years.

The adoption manager for the State of Arizona, Deidre Calcoate, said the website called the Children's Heart Gallery has been a success.

"This is just the beginning," Calcoate said, "of what we hope will help us to find forever families."

Regina Weiler is the Volunteer Program Administrator for the Department of Economic Security, and said the program is only successful because of the donated hours.

"The volunteer piece is incredible," she said.

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