Decatur parent starts Adopt a Senior Project

Stephen Decatur 2021 graduates receive massive amounts of support from the community through the adopt a senior project.

Curtsey of Stephen Decatur Website

Stephen Decatur 2021 graduates receive massive amounts of support from the community through the adopt a senior project.

Meghan Bean, Staff Writer

The last year has brought many difficulties and has taken  many things away. Because of the rising number of Covid cases and safety guidelines many events have been cancelled such as last year’s prom and traditional graduation, this year’s homecoming, football season, several after school clubs and sports, and theatre productions. It also seems likely Decatur will have a significantly modified prom and graduation ceremony.

Last year the community rallied to help support our Decatur seniors, giving them baskets, yard signs, social media posts and many other things. This year Tracy Tilghman, mom of senior Emily Tilghman took notice of all the things her daughter was missing out on. In an effort to support our seniors she created a Facebook page and started the “Adopt a Senior Program.”

Every aspect of the program is done through parents or other adults. Students’ pictures are posted to the page with a biography about themselves, then people in the comments can reply and say “Ill adopt” or something similar signifying they intend to “adopt” that particular person.

Once the senior is adopted, the person who posted them sends the adopter their address and contact information so they can send gifts, cards, homemade goods such as food or projects, and anything else they can think of.

“My daughter is a senior and I see what she is going through or not going through” Tilghman said.

The community response was tremendous. At the end of the first day there were over 200 new members of the Facebook group. Out of 332 kids in the class of 2021 over 204 have been adopted.

“The community really wants this, even businesses are adopting kids now,” Tilghman said.

The outreach of what started out as one mom is now huge but the goal is not quite reached. “This really means a lot to me and to the parents and the community. What I really want is to get every student adopted. Every senior is my goal” Tilghman said.

If you know a person who wants to be adopted whose parent does not have Facebook, you can post them the same way their parents would. If you want to be adopted or adopt visit the Adopt a Stephen Decatur Senior 2021 Facebook group.