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Extraordinary Display of Compassion

Single foster dad adopts five siblings - so they won't have to live apart, like he had to when he was a foster child.

Robert Carter, 29, who, from the age of 12, spent years in the Ohio foster care system as he was growing up, knew only too well what it was like to lose touch with loved ones. It wasn’t until many years later that he was finally reunited with his younger sister and brother.

The five children Carter adopted were living in three separate foster homes when he was awarded custody. “Mr. Carter was the only foster parent willing and able to adopt all of the children,” caseworker Stacey Barton told WCVB-5 TV. “His childhood background has made him aware of the importance of keeping siblings together.”

Before taking on the entire brood, Carter was already fostering the three young brothers. Thoughtfully, he would arrange for the girls and their respective foster mothers to get together occasionally so the siblings wouldn’t lose touch with each another and realized how distressed they all were at the end of the visit. He felt that there was only one option open to him.

The responsibility was a lot for the single man to take on by himself, but Carter was determined to keep these kids together. He successfully won custody, as the photo above shows - taken in the courtroom to mark the momentous occasion.

Right now, Carter is concentrating on earning his children’s trust and believing that in time, love will come along, too. “I’m making memories to replace a lot of the bad ones,” Carter said. “Every night, I talk to them and let them know, ‘I’m your dad forever. I know what it’s like, and I’m always here for you.’”


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