Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - November is National Adoption Month and the state of Montana has made great strides in lowering the number of children in foster care with a huge emphasis on adoption in the state.

Governor Greg Gianforte was in Missoula on Thursday to lead a roundtable discussion with adoptive families and nonprofit partner agencies on the importance of children being placed in loving forever homes.

KGVO News spoke to Gianforte on Thursday morning about the effort to enable more parents to adopt.

Governor Gianforte on KGVO to Promote National Adoption Month

“This was one of the things I focused on coming into office,” began Governor Gianforte. “We had the second highest number of kids in foster care in the entire country per capita at that time, so we went to work. We did develop some public-private partnerships. We also enacted a child adoption tax credit. A family will receive $5,000 if they adopt a child into a loving home, or $7,500 if it's out of the Montana system.”

With the roundtable discussion held at the Missoula Alliance Church on Thursday, Gianforte emphasized the importance of Montana’s faith communities getting more involved in the adoption process.

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Gianforte Emphasized how Faith Communities help Promote Adoptions

“We engaged a new office at the Department of Health and Human Services called The Faith and Community Services office, and they've been working with private sector organizations that are moving the needle,” he said. “We have one organization here in the state that last year touched two-thirds of all the non-kinship placements in the state. It's getting these kiddos into loving homes and we're just thrilled about it.”

A caller on Talk Back from the Mission Valley shared his adoption experience with Governor Gianforte, who responded with thanks to the family.

Gianforte thanked a Mission Valley Family for Adopting a Child

“Jeff, first, let me thank you for opening up your home,” he said. “I have two foster grandchildren, and just having people like you who are willing to take kids into their home is so critical. And I would just think if there are other folks out there to know that we still have kids in foster care, and the data is so strong showing that when kids are raised in foster care, outcomes are not as good. They need a permanent loving home.”

Gianforte closed the conversation by thanking adoptive families throughout the state.

“I'm happy to report we've had a significant reduction in the number of kids in foster care and it's primarily because we've seen a significant increase in the number of adoptions,” he said. “Let's face it; every child deserves to be in a loving home and we're working to make that happen.”

While at KGVO, Governor Gianforte also promoted National Apprenticeship Week.

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Gallery Credit: Ashley

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