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Local Church Helps First Coast Families Hoping To Grow With 'Operation: Adoption'

Steven Depolo

It’s an idea many of us think about, but our thoughts rarely translate into action.It’s estimated about 30 percent of Americans consider adopting at some point, but only about 2 percent actually follow through.

A local church wants to be part of changing that statistic, and they’re doing it through an interesting mentorship program that helps empower and support adoptive families.

"My husband and I adopted a son from South Korea in 2011," said Staci Brown, Chief Financial Officer at the Church of Eleven22. "And as we navigated that process, the lack of support left us saying , the 2 percent should be more because of the number of orphans in this world."

Brown got together with fellow adoptive moms at her congregation, and came up with a new program called "Operation: Adoption."  

"We help educate, and we help encourage. Those are the two biggest things families need help with," she said.

Families who have already adopted are matched with families interested in the process. Operation: Adoption also breaks up the long and arduous adoption process into manageable steps.

For example, February's mentorship meeting deals with the tough finances of adoption. Julie Gumm, author of Adopt Without Debt will speak on that topic this Tuesday night.

To learn more, visit

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter at @MelissainJax.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.