James is an adorable, pleasant 12-year-old. He loves to share smiles and giggles with those he knows and feels comfortable with. Diagnosed with autism, James is nonverbal and communicates mainly through gestures such as pointing, reaching, and touching others to express his wants and needs. He is able to follow some simple, familiar directions and to make choices by grabbing items or pushing them away.

Enrolled in the seventh grade, James receives special-education services and benefits from the small class and individual attention. He also participates in physical, speech, and occupational therapies to increase his skills.

The best family for James will be supportive and encouraging and will be able to give him the special attention he requires. The family should also be patient, understanding, and compassionate. It is important for James to feel secure and part of a stable family that will love him unconditionally throughout his life.

A lifebook - an ongoing record of his life, including photos, souvenirs, documents, and other items - has been started for James and will be available to the family that adopts him.

James and other children are available for adoption. For more information, contact Crystal Allen at the National Adoption Center. E-mail: callen@adopt.org or call 267-443-1867.