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Steve Harvey show honors Manteca mom
The Paiva family, from left, Melanie Paiva holding Appolliona on her lap, Tanzi, Isaiah holding a photo of his late father, Dan, Angelina and, Angelo holding Anthony on his lap.

Melanie Paiva, an adoptive mother of six children, received the accolade for “Mother of the Year” on “The Steve Harvey Show” this month.

The mother with a huge heart, who, with the help of Aspiranet, adopted three children in 2011 after her husband suddenly passed away from a rare heart condition, was nominated by her oldest daughter for the award. When Paiva was flown out to Los Angeles to share her story on the national talk show, she had no idea Harvey was honoring mothers with a week-long celebration on the daytime Emmy-nominated talk show. Paiva was pleasantly surprised and overwhelmed with joy to learn that she was selected as “Mother of the Year” and that she had won all-expenses paid vacation to the Virgin Islands.

Paiva credits God with her ability to “love and nurture children.” “It is through the Lord that I am able to do this and care for all my children on my own,” she said.

In addition to adopting her children Anthony, Apollonia and Isaiah in 2011, Paiva and her late husband also adopted twins Angelina and Angelo over 10 years ago, as well as their oldest daughter, Tanzi. The Paiva family has also fostered a number of foster youth over the past decade and plans to continue to work with Aspiranet, a leading social services agency dedicated to supporting youth and families in California, to open their home to foster youth and adolescents in need.

Paiva hopes her story can motivate others to consider fostering or adopting children. “There are thousands more children just like my six who need a loving home to call their own,” said Paiva. “The blessings you receive when you open your heart to a child in need are immeasurable.”

To learn more about fostering or adopting a child, please call (877) 350-HERO or visit the website at: