ST. CLOUD -- November is National Adoption Awareness Month which promotes awareness of the need for adoptive families for children in the foster care system.

National Adoption Awareness Month kicks off every year with a Presidential Proclamation and followed by celebrations and activites all over the country.

Minnesota Adoption Awareness Month kicked off yesterday (Sunday) with "A Circus of the Heart" in Oakdale.

The event featuring games, a petting zoo, and other activities was open to adopted children and their families, families considering adoption, and the general public.

Events like "A Circus of the Heart" help to gain participation in local programs to promote positive perceptions, debunk adoption myths, and draw attention to the tens of thousands of children in foster care who are waiting for permanent families.

Adoption Awareness Month will culminate with National Adoption Day on November 22nd.

Approximately 4,500 children were adopted into permanent families on National Adoption Day last year.