Healing the Hurt Child

When Brett and Noelle Hersom adopt a 9-year-old with a history of abuse and neglect, they soon realize that given the right combination of love, commitment, patience and flexibility, every child has the potential to heal.

At one point in her first year home, 9-year-old Vienna threw a tantrum so severe, so next level, that her mom, Noelle, made a decision that few parents would make. She didn’t walk away, like she wanted to. She didn’t leave the room and let Vienna work through it. She knew this would be a long one, and she wasn’t about to leave her daughter’s side. So she got a book, and settled in.

“The point was to be there with her and not walk away,” Noelle says. Continue reading “Healing the Hurt Child”

Favorite 15 Stories of 2019

In 2019, we shared some amazing and inspiring stories from and about adoptees, adoptive families, sponsors, donors, and children and families in our programs around the world. It has been an incredible year at Holt — a year that you shared with us as you read, commented on and reposted our updates, stories and videos throughout the year.

Early last year, we merged with the adoption and child welfare agency WACAP — combining our resources and knowledge to help even more orphaned and vulnerable children both in the U.S. and in countries around the world. Throughout the year, Holt’s extraordinary donors made it possible to reach more than 280,000 children and families in 14 countries with everything from school supplies and bicycles to lifesaving food and critically needed surgery. Continue reading “Favorite 15 Stories of 2019”

National Adoption Month 2019: A Recap

This year’s National Adoption Awareness Month campaign made quite the impact!

Throughout the month, Holt families and adoptees helped show the real, raw, emotional moments that capture what it means to adopt, or be adopted. Through stories, photos and videos, they helped take people behind the scenes — showing the true joys and complexities of adoption, and inspiring others to start their own adoption journey, advocate for kids waiting for families or reach out to Holt’s post-adoption team for information about adoptee and family camps, adoptee mentoring through Circle Back, birth search assistance and more! Continue reading “National Adoption Month 2019: A Recap”

Finding Our Amazing

As they got deeper into the Haiti adoption process, the Wilson family realized just how much they would need to “find their amazing” — and how huge an honor this unique path to parenthood would be.

Our son Brody started asking for a brother when he was in preschool. When we realized that another child wouldn’t be possible, we tried to explain that God had made us a family of three. We got him a dog and then a cat, hoping he’d feel like our family was complete. Continue reading “Finding Our Amazing”

With an Open Heart and an Open Mind

special needs adoptionAs you begin your adoption journey, one small step beyond your comfort zone may be all that stands between you and your future child. But openness in adoption looks different for every family. 

So, you want to adopt! After months, or maybe years, of deliberation and prayers, you’re ready to move forward. Maybe you’re still at the very beginning of your journey, researching agencies and reading every adoption blog post you can find on the internet. Or maybe you already have an agency and are eagerly awaiting the next step. Either way, your life is about to change forever.

Continue reading “With an Open Heart and an Open Mind”

Preparing For The Unexpected — And The Expected!

How the “Child-Specific Preparation” tool helped two families anticipate their child’s needs, and ease their transition home.

Two-year-old Nam Fon with her parents.

A 2-year-old girl from Thailand, and a 13-year-old girl from China. Over a thousand miles and a 10-year age difference separated them. But in the last year, both of their lives would change forever in the very same way. Each would leave the life they had known and the country of their birth to join an adoptive family in the United States. And though their caregivers had prepared each girl as much as possible, when the day actually arrived for them to leave — reality sank in. And with it came confusion, fear and sadness. Continue reading “Preparing For The Unexpected — And The Expected!”

He Makes Everyone’s Life Better

In honor of National Down Syndrome Awareness Month — and children with Down syndrome around the world who are waiting for their permanent, loving families — we want to share about Jaxon. This sweet 4-year-old joined his adoptive family eight months ago, and he has enriched their lives more than they ever imagined.  

When Amy Kalani first met Jaxon in China, she thought she’d have no trouble finding him a family.

Although now the director of Holt’s Korea adoption program, at the time, Amy worked with Holt’s China program. When she met Jaxon, she was in China visiting orphanages and meeting children so that she could get to know them — and better advocate for them individually upon returning home.

Out of the dozens of children she met, Jaxon stood out to her the most.

Amy meeting Jaxon in China in March 2017
Amy Kalani meeting Jaxon in China in March 2017.

Continue reading “He Makes Everyone’s Life Better”