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Adoptive parents open arms to medically fragile boy, witness tremendous change

November 20, 2014

Joey-squareDaniel and Kim Pagan began fostering four years ago. Their love for children and devotion to providing permanency for those who lack it led them to adopt six children in three years.

Kim knew she would be busy with a sixth child, but she was confident that she and her husband needed to commit to adopting Joey through Youth Villages.

“I had a full house,” Kim said, “but I am a stay-at-home mom, so I knew he would have around-the-clock care.”

Although Kim and Daniel have experience adopting, Joey needed unique attention. He has quadriplegia cerebral palsy and will require parental care for the rest of his life.

Beginning to parent a medically fragile baby was new for Daniel and Kim.

“Joey’s situation was a completely different ballgame,” Kim said. “We felt lost at first, but Youth Villages knew how to help us.”

With Youth Villages’ adoption specialists guiding them through the process, Kim and Daniel were able to successfully adopt Joey and improve his life. Now Joey is growing to be stronger and healthier with his forever family.

“Joey has changed tremendously,” Kim said. “He was lifeless when he was first with us. He didn’t look like he was going to live. Now he is alert. He tries to walk. He even starts school next week.”

To learn more about adoption through Youth Villages in Tennessee, visit our website at For information about adopting through foster care no matter where you live, visit

Joey’s adoption was finalized after he spent eight months in foster care and had been with Daniel and Kim for a year and a half.

“Joey has found exactly what he needed in his adoptive home,” said Elena, Youth Villages adoption specialist. “He has received care, acceptance and most importantly – abundant love. The Pagans are amazing people.”

Thanks to the Chattanooga therapeutic foster care team, Joey and his new family received the support and services needed to reach this happy ending.

“Those who have worked closely with Joey for nearly two years of custody can now have peace of mind,” Elena said. “Now we know he is in good hands.”

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