Newsroom

Press Release

State of Florida
Department of Children and Families
Rick Scott
Governor

David E. Wilkins
Secretary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 7, 2012
MEDIA CONTACT:
Nicole Stookey, Northwest Region Communications Director, (850) 509-2675
Cyndee Odom, Office of Adoption and Child Protection, EOG, (850) 228-7497
GOVERNOR, FIRST LADY HOST EASTER EVENT WITH EGG HUNT,
EASTER BUNNY AND OTHER FUN ACTIVITIES
~ Children from foster care and National Guard families attend festivities ~
Child waives to the Easter bunny.
Child waives to the Easter bunny.

TALLAHASSEE, FLA. – Governor Rick Scott and First Lady Ann Scott welcomed more than 270 children and families today for a traditional Easter Egg Hunt and to meet the Easter Bunny at the Governor’s Mansion.

"The Governor and I are pleased to again celebrate this special Easter holiday with these wonderful children, their foster and adoptive families, and our National Guard families," said First Lady Ann Scott.

"There are 800 children in Florida's foster care system waiting to find their forever families," Mrs. Scott said. "I encourage all Floridians to consider opening their homes to these beautiful children by adopting a child in state care.

As Mrs. Scott lead the countdown, the children launched into giggles as they raced to search for 1500 Easter eggs on the Mansion's lawn. The children enjoyed music, magic tricks, competed in sack races and hula hoop contests, and even sat quietly to get their faces painted. Many gathered on the porch to listen as First Lady Ann Scott; Tanya Wilkins, wife of DCF Secretary David Wilkins; and Gretchen Titshaw, wife of Major General Emmett, Jr., read stories to them.

Every child took home a goody bag including coloring books and crayons, a Scholastic book, and a calculator. The Governor’s Mansion provided healthy snacks for the guests.

Child is excited to see the Easter bunny.
Child is excited to see the Easter bunny.

"Healthy eating, exercise, reading and spending time together as a family help all of Florida’s children reach their full potential," said Department of Children and Families Secretary David Wilkins. "The generosity of the Governor and First Lady in reaching out to children in foster care and children whose parents serve in the National Guard show us the importance of nurturing, educating and loving all children because they are truly our future."

National Guard families got a special thank you from the Governor and Mrs. Scott for their service. All Floridians were encouraged to support military families during their deployment.

"Holidays can be an especially hard time for families of our deployed service members," said Major General Emmett R. Titshaw, Jr., the Adjutant General of Florida. "We are grateful to the Governor and Mrs. Scott for recognizing how important it is to look after the needs of all our children during this Easter season and always."

During the event, the Heart Gallery North Florida displayed photos of children currently available for adoption. Families interested in adopting a Florida child from foster care can call 1-800-96-ADOPT or go to www.adoptflorida.org.

Children eagerly search for Easter eggs. Children eagerly search for Easter eggs.
In both photos above children eagerly search for Easter eggs.

Child, Deon, who is also available for adoption, finds Easter eggs at the Governor's Mansion.
Child, Deon, who is also available for adoption,
finds Easter eggs at the Governor's Mansion.
Child, Sapphire, who is available for adoption, enjoys the Easter egg hun.
Child, Sapphire, who is available for adoption,
enjoys the Easter egg hun.
Governor, First Lady, Secretary Wilkins and wife Tanya, General Titshaw and wife Gretchen pose with special needs, foster and adopted children during opening remarks.
Governor, First Lady, Secretary Wilkins and wife Tanya, General Titshaw and wife Gretchen
pose with special needs, foster and adopted children during opening remarks.

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