Tears of joy, smiles, and clapping was heard inside the 128th District Courtroom in Orange County. On Wednesday, four families adopted their children out of the foster care system.

While Texas is doing a better job of finding homes for abused and neglected children, there is still a critical need for adoptive parents.

"Over 5,000 children were adopted last year in the state of Texas so we are proud of that number, but we still have 6,000 children that need to be adopted." said Shari Pulliam with the Department of Family and Protective Services.

November is National Adoption Month and 128th District Judge Courtney Arkeen say it is important to raise awareness.

"It has a special place in my heart. My momma and uncle were adopted. Most of my family is adopted so I enjoy this day probably more than any other days throughout the year." Judge Arkeen said.

Find out more about becoming an adoptive parent at AdoptChildren.org.