BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Saturday before Thanksgiving, families across the country celebrate National Adoption Day.

In Maryland, multiple groups work together to make this a special holiday for adoptive families.

Maryland Circuit Courts celebrate National Adoption Day by honoring adoptive families and raising awareness for children in foster care, encouraging families to open up their homes and hearts for those in need.

Families were bursting with joy inside the Circuit Court for Baltimore as they finalized their adoptions on Saturday.

“I mean it’s a great feeling to add to your home and to get love from them is unconditional,” said Annie Dingle, an adoptive parent.

Annie and Roy Dingle have been in foster care for more than 25 years. They said they share a similar passion with adoptive families who understand the importance of giving children permanent and loving homes.

“It’s not my first time, everybody asks if I am going to adopt everybody but I can’t, but I give what I can and I love doing it from the bottom of my heart,” Dingle said.

On National Adoption Day, 26 children found their forever families in Baltimore, a holiday that is celebrated in more than 400 cities across the country.

“Children need to have permanency, stability and also a loving family they can grow up in so they can be nurtured,” said Stacy Rodgers with the Baltimore Department of Social Services. “It’s unfortunate when we are unable to find adoptive families and children have to grow up in foster care so we are always looking for foster parents who may become adoptive parents,”

Since National Adoption Day started in 2000, more than 70,000 children in foster care have found permanent loving homes nationwide.

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