National Adoption Month 2020

Every year, we get excited for November because it’s National Adoption Month — a month devoted to advocating for children who are waiting for permanent, loving families, and raising awareness about the continuing need for and challenges surrounding adoption!

But it’s not just agencies and organizations that raise awareness about adoption during the month of November. No matter who you are, everyone can help advocate for children who are waiting for families through adoption.

And no matter what their role, every person involved in adoption has a story to share. No story or experience is the same for adoptees, adoptive families, birth families or anyone impacted by adoption, and every voice and perspective is valuable when exploring the complexities and the joys of building a family through adoption.

This month we’re featuring some of our favorite adoption stories. We’d love to hear yours. If you’d like to send us a photo with a caption or a first person account of your experience with adoption, email it to dottiee@holtinternational.org. Enjoy this month’s celebration. And thanks for being a part of the Holt family.

Four Things to Consider When Sharing Your Family’s Adoption Story

After 15 years of blogging about her adoptive family of 12 — and recently sharing their story with the world in the documentary “Hayden and Her Family”— Elizabeth Curry has learned a few things about what, how, where and when not to share about her children and their lives growing up in a multiracial, international adoptive family. Here are Elizabeth’s four key pieces of advice to consider when sharing about your family and your family’s adoption story.

This story is part two in a series. Click here to read part one, “How Our Family Became the Subject of a Documentary.”

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How Our Family Became the Subject of a Documentary

When a documentary filmmaker approached Elizabeth and Jud Curry about filming their lives as a multiracial, international adoptive family of 12, they hesitated. But then their 9-year-old daughter, recently adopted from China, asked a question that so surprised them, they decided to say yes — welcoming viewers inside their lives and home.

This story is part one in a series. Click here to read part two, “Four Things to Consider When Sharing Your Family’s Adoption Story.”

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In Good Hands | A China Adoption Travel Thank You Message

When the Kennedy family arrived in China to adopt their daughter Mia last year, some things did not go as expected. But John Feng — Holt’s site manager in Guangzhou, China — went above and beyond to care for them and meet each need that they and their daughter had.

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An Act of Kindness

As a baby in China, Callie Ware had a sponsor who helped care for her while she waited to come home to her adoptive family. Now 17, she’s continuing her sponsor’s act of kindness by sponsoring another child in need.

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A Birth Mom’s Adoption Story

Every adoption story is different, and stories from birth parents are ones that are not often shared. At Holt, we hope to honor mothers like Sarabeth who made the difficult decision to place their children for adoption. Listen to Sarabeth talk about her experience here.

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Growing With Love

Adoptive mom Johanna Utman describes her family’s journey to adopt their daughter, Alanna, from the Philippines, and why it was one of the most beautiful and heart-wrenching experiences of their lives.

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7 Pieces of Advice From Adoptees

When you share your plans to adopt, there’s a good chance that you will hear lots of opinions and advice. And once in the process, you will go through 10 or more hours of training to help prepare you for the unique experience of parenting an adopted child. But when it comes to connecting with your child, some of the best advice you will hear will come from adoptees themselves.

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With an Open Heart and an Open Mind

As 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.

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Pregnant at 14, They Made a Loving Open Adoption Plan

Macy and Liam were 14 when they found out they were pregnant. They felt scared and lost. But surrounded by an open-minded and strong support system, including workers from Holt in Wisconsin, they chose a loving open adoption plan for their daughter.

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Sisters, Reunited

Meet Rekha, Deborah and Christina — three Indian adoptees from different families with one very strong and powerful connection: their shared beginning.

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The Truth About Adopting Toddlers From Foster Care

If you’re thinking about adopting a toddler in the care of a foster family overseas, here, adoptive mom Jill Spitz shares advice on understanding and empathy.

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Their Forever Place

Just 8 and 6 years old, Ariel and Sammy spent years moving through Oregon’s foster care system. But in November 2018, they made their final and forever stop — moving in with a family that would become their last. And in August 2019, Ariel and Sammy’s adoption was finalized, making them permanent members of the Beatty family.

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A Family That Will Love Me

At a care center in Bogotá, several older children who have chosen to be adopted share what it means to them to have a family — and what they would like to tell people who are considering adopting an older child.

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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.

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A Miracle for Gracie

Four-year-old Gracie was weeks away from traveling to her adoptive family in the U.S. when COVID-19 hit Haiti. With a heart condition and suppressed immune system, she urgently needed to be on the last known flight leaving Haiti. But no one expected it would take an army of compassion, and a miracle, to get her here.

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What a Difference a Year Makes

The first year home for a child and his or her adoptive family holds a lot of change, joy, difficulty, patience and love. But one year can make all the difference.

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The Hardest Thing I’ve Ever Had To Do

Gina’s domestic U.S. adoption story is one that may resonate with any birth mother. And understanding stories like hers is important for everyone who is touched by adoption.

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My Son’s Second Mother

Adoptive mom Angela Crisanto shares a tribute to her son’s “second mother” — his foster mother — in gratitude for all the love she gave him while in her care in Korea.

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No Fairytale Ending

Courtney Young, an adoptee and member of Holt’s fundraising team, met her birth mother during her first trip to Korea with Holt. Here, she discusses family, culture and the complexities of adoption.

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Older Child Adoption: An Expert Adopts

Holt’s director of clinical services — Celeste Snodgrass — shares about adopting her son Max from Thailand at 9 years old. While an adoption expert by profession, Celeste affirms that no older-child adoption goes perfectly smoothly. But it’s the perfect option for many families, and for children who have been waiting so long.

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