LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) –It’s Michigan Reunification Day. A day to celebrate bringing families back together and those who helped make it possible.
This day is a part of the American Bar Association’s annual National Reunification Month. Michigan is one of 32 states to celebrate the month. Officials say this is a time to praise the work of judges, court staff, child welfare professionals, and parents across the state who work to reunite children in foster care with their families.
Today, dozens gathered at the Hall of Justice for the celebration to honor the success of Michigan’s Family Reunification Program.
“We are saving the world one child and one family at a time,” Judge Jeffery Dufon said.
The program is designed to get children in foster care back with their families or with a permanent family. The Reeves are a product of this program and said they’re grateful.
“First, I had my daughter taken years ago and they didn’t have a program like this and then I kept doing bad things and had my other children taken,” Ashley Reeves said.
Reeves is a mother of 4. As a result of a 16-year-long addiction to Methamphetamine her children were placed in the foster care system. After years of trying to get clean, Reeves said she realized she couldn’t do it on her own.
“The only thing that got me clean was this program,” Reeves said.
Now clean for the last six years, Reeves has her family back together and said for her, life is better.
“There’s no better feeling in the world than being with my family,” she said.
Her 15-year-old daughter, Abby Reeves, said this is a fresh start.
“I’m just glad they have programs like this to give parents a chance to rebuild their life and not just completely take their kids away. It’s perfect now. It’s way better than it was before. I’m finally back with my mom,” Abby Reeves said.
Ashley Reeves has a message for those who may be where she once was.
“This program helped me get clean and help me get my family back together. We do recover it’s possible. It takes a lot of hard work,” Reeves said.