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Americans Urged to Adopt Homeless from Shelters

In the midst of the current economic downturn, the Department of Housing and Urban Development has launched a campaign to urge Americans looking to expand their family to take in a homeless person from a shelter rather than getting a baby from a breeder or adopting a foreign child.

According to DHUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, the recent foreclosure crisis has put 1 million to 2 million new homeless people in shelters nationwide, where many face euthanasia if they aren't adopted within as short a time as two weeks.

"As we speak, millions of homeless sit shivering in cramped cages in shelters around the country waiting to be taken in by a generous, warm-hearted family - or be put down with toxic gas," Donovan said.

Seeking to combat a new population of super-homeless - vagrants who not only cannot be accommodated by inundated shelters, but lack the ability to find room to huddle under an overhang during rainstorms or to even get arrested in the towns they can’t afford to reside in, purveyors of shelters are imploring prospective benefactors to consider adopting older and special needs people without homes.

Stated Fulton County Rescue Mission Deborah Payne, "Approximately 20% of our homeless are pure or mixed European breeds under the age of 18, and the rest are all equally lovable, wonderful people who are just waiting for a chance to be your perfect new friend."

Elaine Crowder of San Diego, California shared her experience with adopting from homeless shelters.

"After getting a fourteen year-old brown haired Irish-Ukrainian mix a few years back, we adopted a middle-aged Spanish speaking black this time around. I think he might be from South America," Crowder remarked, "Of course he’s a bit ornery and likes to get into the alcohol cabinet whenever we leave the house, but we’re willing to bet that with enough tough love and fungicide for his rotten foot, he’ll work out fine."

Despite the unique challenges facing those who choose to save a homeless adult from a shelter, Richard Hagel of the American Homeless Rescue League enumerated the advantages of doing so over adopting or conceiving a child.

"Their sometimes unusual odors notwithstanding, many homeless are housetrained and in most cases are more intelligent than infants, allowing them to integrate to their adoptive homes quicker," Hagel says, "Also, unlike minors, if you ever get sick of them, you can just point to the door and tell them to hit the road."

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