A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

A happy story: Trey, 21, always wanted a place to belong; now he has been adopted by foster parents

By Nick Prior and Natalie Hemmer

The foster parents at DCCH Center for Children and Families are always willing to offer their homes to the many children who are victims of abuse and neglect. The foster program works hard to make sure every child is provided with a safe environment to grow and work through their own personal issues.

Some of the children in this placement are reunited with their biological family members, while others are adopted by the wonderful foster parents who want to adopt the children into their own families.

These adoptions are special occasions, even more so when the adoption is for an adult.

Trey and his new parents (Photo provided)

Buddy and Amanda Robinson are no strangers to fostering and adopting the children from DCCH Center for Children and Families, with several different foster and adoption cases under their belts.

Throughout the years, Buddy and Amanda have served as mentors and advocates for the many children who come through this program, which is where they initially met Trey.

Buddy and Amanda even provided respite care for Trey before finally agreeing to foster him when he was 18-years-old. They have continued to foster him into Trey’s twenties. Now, at age 21, Trey is ready for adoption, and Buddy and Amanda are ready to welcome him into their family.

According to Ron Bertsch, Director of the Therapeutic Foster Care Program at DCCH Center for Children and Families, “Trey became DCCH’s first teen to enter our new Independent Living Program after he turned eighteen, and he did very well, working a job and attending NKU. It has been a long foster care journey for Trey, as he entered foster care at age 13 and was with another agency initially. I first met him when he was fifteen years old and started another chapter with DCCH Center.”

To celebrate and finalize this wonderful new chapter in Trey’s life, he has asked for a “name reveal” party where he will accept his new family name. Trey will be adopting his new family’s last name, Robinson, but has asked his new adoptive parents to provide his middle name, something he feels will solidify the process.

Buddy and Amanda spent some time pondering what name they would give their soon-to-be adult son, and finally decided to bestow the name Maxwell, after Buddy’s father who had recently passed away.

“I’m so grateful that Buddy and Amanda answered this call and will be there for him,” says Bertsch.


Being a foster parent can be a difficult endeavor, but it is also a rewarding one.

Trey has become an integrated part of Buddy and Amanda’s family and has formed lasting connections with the other siblings in the home. The siblings in the home have helped Trey grow and develop new experiences, from trying new foods to making new friends to finding new enjoyable activities. Buddy and Amanda have welcomed Trey into their family and are providing him with the love and support he needs to be a successful young man.

“I could not be happier for Trey, now that he has a forever family.  He realized that just because you turn twenty-one, doesn’t mean you don’t need and want a family,” said Bertsch.

When asked to talk about the adoption, Buddy and Amanda began to describe how different it was to foster an older child. Buddy described younger children as still being open to parenting, while the older teenagers already know what they want and need. Older teenagers and young adults need someone there to support and encourage them; they need someone to always have their back.

These older teenagers in foster care have been moved around quite frequently in their childhood, so they are looking for a place to call home. They need a person to call if they have questions about growing up into the adult world and they need a home to go to for the holidays.

When they are younger, children enjoy Christmas because they are given different presents, but as they get older, adults realize they need to someone to give gifts to as well.

When asked about Trey, Ron Bertsch said, “Trey is a smart young man. I always knew he had so much potential and tried to let him know this over the years. He challenged me once, using his quick wit and a splash of sarcasm. He wanted me to make sure he was going to be in a good and safe foster home. In turn, I asked him to just be the best person he could be, use his brain that God gave him, and create a good life for himself with the help that others wanted to offer, and that would make me so proud!”

Trey has grown into a capable and independent young man, but he still needs someone to do for, which is the family and support Buddy and Amanda have created for their new son.

DCCH will be hosting a Foster Care & Adoption Informational Meeting on Tuesday, May 21st, at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will be held in the Miller Building on DCCH’s campus. This is a great opportunity to learn more about foster care and adoption, the process, and what is required. The event is free to the public.

Related Posts

Leave a Comment