An International Forum in Washington D.C.
by Susan Seunkoom Cox, Vice President of Policy and External Affairs
Participants from around the world gathered in Washington D.C. (April 14-16) to celebrate fifty-five-years of intercountry adoption at the International Forum sponsored by Holt International and Adoptees for Children. The conference was an unprecedented examination of international adoption and child welfare through the lens of adult adoptees.
Since the environment for international child welfare and adoption is influenced by global concerns and challenges more than ever, Washington D.C. was selected as the conference site so national and international policy makers could participate. Notable presenters from various countries presented during the conference. This was the first significant conference to highlight the unique personal perspective of adoption professionals who also happen to be adult adoptees. Too often the influence and voices of those who have lived the experience are not represented. As the organization that pioneered intercountry adoption, Holt International benefits from the experiences of three generations of adult adoptees.
Many of these adult adoptees attended the International Forum and represented the critical importance of adoption in the lives of children. The adoptees met with government officials, international guests, child welfare experts and Members of Congress and their staff.
The International Forum began with a press conference at the National Press Club (entire event can be seen at www.holtinternational.org) and the premier book signing of the new adoptee anthology, “More Voices.” The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute hosted a luncheon in the Kennedy Caucus Room and Korean Ambassador Han hosted an amazing evening of Korean food and dance at his residence. The Forum concluded with a Gala dinner and program Saturday evening with Holt adoptive parent, the Honorable Marjorie Margolies serving as host.
The Forum was made possible by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
Contact Adoptee Outreach Director, Courtney Rader email@example.com to order “More Voices” anthology