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Adoption Ambassador Nia Vardalos

Nia Vardalos

We all know her lovable character "Toula"  from her hit comedy "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," but now Winnipeg-born actress Nia Vardalos is shining her star power on adoption from foster care, something she has experienced firsthand. Read about how adoption changed her life and what she wants to tell her fellow Canadians.

Canadian actor, writer and director Nia Vardalos and her husband, actor Ian Gomez, adopted their daughter at age three from American Foster Care in the United States, where they currently live.

Here’s what Nia has to say about the impact that adopting her daughter had on her life.

“When this child comes into your life, everything about them and you will be new to each other. So it is a fresh start. In a way, you’re both babies starting out in this relationship.”

“My daughter was three, and she had never had strawberry ice cream. I took pictures of the sheer delight on her face.”

“We just keep thinking – Wow, she healed us. She made us a family. We didn’t do anything that’s heroic or fantastic. We just got lucky.”

Nia would like to encourage other Canadians to consider adopting through their provincial child welfare system, and to consider adding an older child to their families.

“If you think that adoption is not an option for you because of the cost associated or the need to travel abroad, I am pointing this out as an option for you because it’s affordable and accessible. There are thousands of children waiting in foster care in Canada."

“If you bring an older child into your home, you can give her a fresh start. There are so many pluses to adopting an older child. There’s something very comforting about a child who can verbalize and tell you how they are feeling.”

“A family is a family, and there are 30,000 children and youth in Canada waiting for one. Our daughter came to live with us, and turned our house into a home.”