National Adoption Month 2019: Real Moments, Real Stories

For National Adoption Month, we're asking for your help to show the real moments that capture what it means to adopt, or be adopted.

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 issues 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.

Continue reading “National Adoption Month 2019: Real Moments, Real Stories”

Their Forever Place

Just 8 and 6 years old, Ariel and Sammy spent years in Oregon’s foster care system. They lived in different homes, with different families. 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. 

On a Tuesday morning on the outskirts of Corvallis, Oregon, there’s a party happening. In the field around Cami and Garrett Beatty’s home there’s a huge flying saucer bouncy-house, inflatable obstacle course, bubbles, and waffles with sprinkles and berries and whipped cream. With dozens of friends milling around, eating and playing, this looks like the best birthday party ever. What they’re celebrating is something different, but just as momentous.

Continue reading “Their Forever Place”

Five Decisions Every Adoptive Family Needs to Make

Once you start to consider adoption, it’s important to look into the other decisions that you’ll need to think about. Below, we listed the top five decisions you’ll need to make early on in the adoption process, as well as some useful information to help you make them!

  1. Decide what age, gender and special needs you’re open to.

Deciding on the profile of child you’re open to is one significant decision that every family has to make. If you’re looking into international adoption, the profile of child can vary. On average, most children adopted internationally are between the ages of 2 to 3 years old when they arrive home. But many older children urgently need families, and if you’re open to an older child, your process could move quicker.

Continue reading “Five Decisions Every Adoptive Family Needs to Make”

Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan to Transfer Private Domestic Adoption Program to Holt International

Holt International Children’s Services and Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan (LSS) announced today that LSS will transfer its private domestic adoption program to Holt International.

WEST ALLIS, Wis. (May 16, 2019) – Holt International Children’s Services and Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan (LSS) announced today that LSS will transfer its private domestic adoption program to Holt International. The transition of the program will be complete by June 3, 2019.

Approximately 60 families awaiting adoption will have the option to transfer their cases to Holt International. Holt has been expanding its presence in Wisconsin and has recently established a license in the state. To ensure a smooth transition, some members of the LSS adoption team will join the Holt team. Continue reading “Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan to Transfer Private Domestic Adoption Program to Holt International”

The Hardest Thing I’ve Ever Had To Do

GIna with her newborn son.Fifteen years after placing her son for adoption, Gina Ledesma got in contact with Holt earlier this year.  When we asked her if she was open to sharing her story, her response was an enthusiastic “yes.” While the environment and circumstances are different from country to country and individual to individual, 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.

Gina will never forget the three hard, precious days she had with her son.

“I just counted all the toes and fingers,” she says, remembering those days in a hospital bed in Eugene, Oregon. “I looked at every little piece and part — and said my goodbyes.”

Twenty-nine years ago, Gina chose adoption for her son. Continue reading “The Hardest Thing I’ve Ever Had To Do”

Sylvia Needs a Family!

Sylvia needs a family!
Sylvia lives in the U.S. and needs a family to adopt her domestically!

One look at these pictures, and you can see that Sylvia is an adorable, happy child with a big, wide smile and sparkling eyes. She loves engaging and interacting with others, and has a sweet temperament and rarely cries, much preferring to laugh and giggle instead. One of her favorite things to do is play with her foster sibling, with whom she has a very close relationship. Continue reading “Sylvia Needs a Family!”

Who are Holt’s sponsored children?

In Holt’s nearly 60-year history, we’ve had the opportunity to impact the lives of hundreds of thousand of children and families. Historically, most of these children were adopted into loving families — and from that history came Holt’s legacy as an adoption agency. While this is totally true, many people are surprised to learn that very few of the children in Holt’s growing sponsorship program are on a track to join an adoptive family overseas. For every child who is adopted in the U.S. in order to join a loving family, Holt helps thousands more children stay or reunite with their birth families, or join an adoptive family in their country of birth — helping to achieve Holt’s mission of finding families for children.

So, who are Holt’s sponsored children?

Let’s break it down: Continue reading “Who are Holt’s sponsored children?”

Two Organizations Join Forces for the World’s Most Vulnerable Children

Holt International assumes management of Sunny Ridge Family Center’s operations in Illinois.

We have some exciting news to share with you regarding our work in Illinois.

Effective May 1, 2014,  Sunny Ridge Family Center in Bolingbrook will merge with Holt International, joining forces in our efforts to find loving adoptive families for children in the United States and overseas. Holt will assume management of Sunny Ridge’s operations, and will operate as Holt-Sunny Ridge Children’s Services in Illinois — a branch office to Holt’s headquarters in Eugene, Oregon. Holt has branch offices that provide direct services to families living in several states from California to New Jersey, and looks forward to expanding these services to families in Illinois. “We are excited to have a direct connection with families at all levels of their adoption process in this state,” says Susie Doig, Holt’s senior director of adoption services.

Sunny Ridge started providing domestic adoption services in 1979, and international adoption services in 1981. With this merger, Holt plans to continue domestic placements in Illinois, beginning a new and exciting chapter — finding loving homes for children both internationally and in the U.S.  We also plan to continue the long tradition of programs and services provided by Sunny Ridge, including exceptional post adoption services and adoption-competent therapy.  “We are excited to continue these already successful programs,” says Susie.

Amy Trotter, a Holt adoptee from Vietnam, will serve as Holt-Sunny Ridge Children’s Services director.

Declining adoptions have put a strain on agencies in the United States. The merge with Sunny Ridge comes in direct response to this, and follows several months of collaboration between the two organizations. “We believe this is an opportunity to bring the best of two organizations together,” says Phillip Littleton, Holt president and CEO. “This merger will allow us to better serve families and supporters in Illinois, and further develop Holt’s reach in child welfare and social service activities.”

Amy Trotter, who was adopted from Vietnam through Holt, will serve as Holt-Sunny Ridge’s new director. With a personal connection to Holt, Amy has extensive knowledge of our adoption and child welfare services, and looks forward to joining the Holt team. “This is a natural transition for me,” Trotter says. “I know of the good work that Holt has provided for nearly 60 years and I am excited about being the bridge between these two outstanding organizations.”

We hope that you will pray for us as we embark on this new endeavor, merging with Sunny Ridge in Illinois for the benefit of the world’s most vulnerable children and continuing our vision: A world where every child has a loving and secure home.

Click here to read a press release about the merger.