10-year-old Dejuan still waiting for a forever family - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

10-year-old Dejuan still waiting for a forever family

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Dejuan has been featured on Adopt 8 two times before, and News 8 is hoping the third time is a charm for the 10-year-old. The change in Dejuan over the past few years has been visible, putting up some emotional walls, as he copes with disappointment after disappointment.

Now, meet Dejuan once again and the hope for this boy is that there is a family for him, so he won't have to spend the rest of his childhood in a group home with no family to love him, once he turns 18.

"I think once he feels safe and secure, he'll really thrive," said social worker, James Largent.

Dejuan isn't quick to trust. His face so sad, serious and so entirely different from the boy News 8 first introduced you to four years ago.

When News 8 featured Dejuan on Adopt 8 in December of 2005, he was a playful six-year-old boy who enjoyed being a kid. He shared with us his dazzling smile, and his favorite toy that he'd just received, which was a snowman.

But the Christmas wish that did not come true for Dejuan that year was finding a forever family.

Two years later in 2007, News 8 profiled Dejuan again - still in the system and seemingly a bit more reserved. However, he was captivated like most eight-year-old boys by a video game.

When asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, Dejuan said a lizard so people could catch him.

Dejuan, desperately wanted to be caught by someone to care for him, love him and give him something to smile about every day, but that didn't happen either.

Now, at the age of 10, Dejuan has all but given up. His life, recently turned upside down, after having to move out of a home that had offered him some stability.

"He wanted this family that he recently stayed with and it was a huge disappointment for him to not have it," said James. "He was really starting to make progress and the person taking care of him had some health problems and wasn't able to continue."

So Dejuan is living in a facility right now.

"That's what's familiar to him and as that starts to sink in the institutionalized idea, if a family doesn't come soon, that'll just progress more and more," explained James.

And Dejuan's social worker does not want Dejuan transitioned into a group home, which is where he'll go next, if a family doesn't step forward to take him in.

"That's what I'm trying to fight against. To be able to get him into a home, a family, I don't even know if it has to be adoptive family really what we're looking for is to try to find somebody who can commit to him long term, if that turns into adoption, that'd be great you know, but he needs a family that is going to be consistent with him and care for him day in and day out," said James.

James has watched Dejuan grow these past few years and is one of just a few people Dejuan trusts. James says it took time to break down Dejuan's walls.

"He was kind of quiet, kind of reserved, and he wouldn't look at me a whole lot and he was slow to talk and warm up," James continued.

But now the two have a special bond.

"He's very imaginative creative. He loves to read, and he's actually really an exceptional reader for he's beyond grade level, so he loves stories and that kind of thing," added James.

This is a critical time for Dejuan who's on his way toward adolescence and those impressionable years that can make all the difference in how Dejuan's future turns out.

"He's 10. He kind of knows what's happened to him, and he needs the hope we can offer so a family would be exactly what he needs," noted James.

A family he can trust - parents who can pull out the handsome smile that Dejuan has become so good at hiding.

If you'd like to learn more about Dejuan or the adoption process, please call 1-877-I-ADOPT-U.

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