You may have seen some new faces in the Mesa Mall; faces eager to find a home.
The Heart Gallery features children up for adoption. It is part of a statewide display, pulling at many hearts in the Grand Valley.
One family in Grand Junction has been adopting for the past 3 years and they say they would never look back. They say events like these are critical in promoting such a worthy cause.
Five children now find comfort in the living room of the Tenorio Family.
MJ Tenorio is the mother who said, "I love being an adoptive mother. it's a dream come true."
Tenorio said she is blessed to have her children in her life, just as much as they are happy to be there.
Before adoption, Stephanie Tenorio thought she might never have the family she'd always envisioned.
Stephanie Tenorio said, "It was lonely." When asked why is was lonely she said, "…because it was just my little brothers and me."
Which is how her new big sister, Iona Tenorio said as well, "It was pretty nerve racking, coming into a place where I didn't know where I was or anybody." Now Iono said she never worries, "You know moving into a larger family is pretty cool."
Just as these kids found their home, the Heart Gallery at the Mesa Mall is an effort to help others can find theirs too.
Each of professionally photographed faces are children looking to be adopted.
About 45% of the children featured in the heart gallery typically get adopted out of the 85-90 children featured in the 3 galleries in Colorado.
State of Colorado’s Adoption Program Administrator Connie Vigil said when a child is adopted, it is a great thing to see, "Rather than to leave holes in the heart gallery, we leave the children up and put a on there ribbon on there saying that they found their forever family."
Just as Stephanie Tenorio found hers, "It’s kind of awesome because they all love me."
Families looking into adopting children of their own can check out the Heart Gallery at the Mesa Mall. It will be showcased until April 2nd.