‘He Was Exactly What the Kids Needed’: Las Vegas Man Steps Up to Adopt Three Brothers to Keep Them Together After He Saw Them In Magazine Feature

A Las Vegas man is being praised for stepping up and taking on the responsibility of becoming a father to three siblings in foster care.

In March 2022, People magazine featured six groups of siblings in foster care awaiting a family or someone to step up to adopt them. Three Black boys were among the groups that were featured in the article. Tayveon, 11, Ireon, 10, and Tayvon,9, all loved sports and liked to joke around but had experienced a rough few years.

Jason Smith and the three boys posing in a Nevada courtroom after being officially adopted. (Photo: @MeawwWorld/ Facebook screenshot)

The three boys lived in five different homes in five years and were recently separated from their two younger sisters after the girls were adopted by a Nevada couple.

Jason Smith saw the article and decided that he and the boys would be a perfect match for one another. Smith started fostering them in April 2022 after he spotted the boys on an adoption website.

“I’m fully invested at this point,” said Smith in a June interview with WDSU’s Digital Team. “I reassured them that they would not be moving again and their case worker that this is it.”

Smith, 45, works as a human resources executive at Caesars Entertainment. The trio and potential foster dad clicked right away after meeting at a McDonald’s after school.

“Let’s make sure they like you,” Smith recalls to People magazine of the case worker saying to him.

The four had a sleepover following the playdate, and Smith said things “took off” from that point.

“From day one he treated them like they were his own,” says Benaleta Simpkins, a social worker in the Clark County Department of Children and Family Services, to People.

She added, “It was never about Jason. He was exactly what the kids needed.”

The trio had moved into Smith’s home later that month. Then, Smith officially became their legal guardian nine months later. Smith told WDSU he felt compelled to adopt the boys to honor his deceased father and felt like he was passing along his father’s legacy.

The adoption was completed in a Nevada court with 30 of his friends cheering him and 30 more watching online. Smith said the judge was “blown away.

“We’re living a normal life here,” says Tayveon, who is the oldest.

Smith is teaching the boys how to cook, clean, and do laundry and has them attending church regularly. He often takes them to Chili’s or skateboarding or hiking after church. In addition to spending quality time with the trio, Smith makes plans once a month with the foster care parents of their younger sisters, Tayonna, 7, and Sha’kyia, 4, for them all to hang out.

Ireon, the middle child, says the best part is they are “able to talk, help, and love each other.”

Smith recently purchased a bigger home with more room for the adopted trio.

“We get to have a family, and we don’t have to go to another house again and again and again,” said Ireon to People.

The new father says the boys have brought purpose into his life.

“Foster care training prepares you for the worst, but I haven’t experienced any of that,” said Smith to People.

He added, “I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. It’s like God wanted us to be together.”

Black children are overrepresented in the U.S. foster care system, data shows, and they spend a longer time in the system than white children. While Black children accounted for roughly 14 percent of children in the nation in 2019, they made up 23 percent of the foster care population.

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