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A drawing to last a lifetime: Austin-area child up for adoption uses art as an outlet

In Forever Families, KVUE highlights Darleesia, an upbeat 12-year-old who loves animals, drawing and playing with her dolls.

AUSTIN, Texas — It is a fun day on the job when one of the Heart Gallery children wants to go on a new adventure, and it is clear that Darleesia, or Dede for short, can make every day a fun day.

The 12-year-old is upbeat and ready to take on the world – even if it is just learning how to skip rocks across the water at Roy. G Guerrero Colorado River Park. 

Bundled up in their jacket, that is exactly what she and KVUE's Tori Larned did one chilly fall day.

However, after a few skips, Dede realized she was ready to show off her favorite skills and went up to the park awning to start drawing. Her creative juices flow daily. It is her way of escaping into her own world. 

"I like to draw animals and humans," Darleesia told KVUE.

When she is not drawing, she also loves to play with her dolls, especially from Frozen or Strawberry Shortcake, and someday she wants to learn how to play the guitar.

"I've been in choir and we sing. That reminds me of guitars," she said. 

When she grows up, she wants to become a police officer so she can help others.

"Save the world and help people. Take bad guys to jail," she said. 

She has a kind heart, so this is no surprise, but for now, she is going to stick to being a kid. Her favorite thing about her childhood is her two brothers. While they are not a part of the same adoption, it is very important that she keeps a relationship with them and sees them often. 

PHOTOS: Meet Darleesia

Most of all, she needs a loving and supportive family who can bring out her beautiful laugh. 

She will do well in a single or two-parent household, with or without siblings. This family will need to provide a trauma-informed, loving, structured environment to further Darleesia's emotional and developmental growth.

However, when asked what she wants in her perfect family, Darleesia said they just need to be "cool, awesome and friendly."  

To learn more about Darleesia or send an inquiry to adopt, visit her page on the Heart Gallery of Central Texas.

KVUE launched the Forever Families segment with Partnerships for Children (PFC) in June 2020 to highlight children in the Heart Gallery of Central Texas who need secure and permanent families. Every day, there are nearly 1,000 children waiting to get adopted in Central Texas, according to PFC.

WATCH: Meet Darleesia


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