Party of 12: Couple adopts 10 children

GALION, Ohio (WTVG) -- The Hart family is a lot like any other. Mom, dad, and kids go on family outings, celebrate milestones, and just hang out.

However, unlike many families, you'll notice there's a lot of people in this one.

"A lot of hard work," adds Roger Hart, the family patriarch.

That hard work of managing a large family was a choice made by Roger and Lisa Hart. In 1997, the two decided to become foster parents.

"I was in the library one day and I saw a sign in regards to foster care and I made the phone call," explains Lisa. For the next 23 years, she and her husband would care for kids on a temporary basis.

"It's been rewarding," describes Roger. "We've met a lot of good people. Lot of good children. We've had hundreds come through our house."

That is, until one day, Roger and Lisa made a more lasting commitment. They adopted two brothers with special needs, Rex and Jason.

After that, they added Billy and Devon to the family.

Then, four siblings, Jesi, Jose, Tia, and MacKenzie.

And Ben.

And Christopher.

In all, 10 adopted brothers and sisters are now part of the Hart family.

"I think we're a pretty cool group," said Lisa during a visit to 13abc, "and I think that having a large family, it teaches you things, having a large family, it teaches you things that you wouldn't learn or experience in a smaller family."

For example, they learned sign language. They also learned the importance of keeping siblings together. It's a cornerstone of the mission of Adopt America Network.

"(Adopt America Network is) great to work with," says Lisa. "It's a different process where the families actually have to be matched with a child. You can say, "I'll take ..." You can tell them how many children you want. You want boys or girls. You want a sibling group. What ages. And then they start looking for you."

"They've kept us in the loop a lot of times," adds Roger. "They always think about us."

Thinking about what's best for the children extends to what's best for the family. Adopt America Network will tell you the family that plays together, stays together.

The Hart family will be the guests of honor at the Adopt America Network Home for Good Gala, Friday, October 11, 2019 beginning at 5:30 PM at Parkway Place in Maumee. It's a black-tie optional evening of food, wine, and auctions. You can place bids on silent auction items here: Adopt America Network 2019 Home For Good Gala

The guest speaker will be Sean Anders, director and screenwriter of
"Instant Family," starring Mark Wahlberg. You can sign up in advance for a free screening of the movie at 6:00 PM Thursday, Oct. 10, by clicking here: FREE Tickets to Instant Family at Levis Commons