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, when 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.” Continue reading “Four Things to Consider When Sharing Your Family’s Adoption Story”

How Our Family Became the Subject of a Documentary

The Currys are raising 12 children, five of whom are adopted.

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.”

Continue reading “How Our Family Became the Subject of a Documentary”

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”

The Full Picture Of My Adoption

Last year for National Adoption Month, adoptee Mai Anh Hall reflected on adoption’s role in life — a role she hadn’t thought much about in her 21 years of life. One year later, she takes a closer look at the full picture.

Mai Anh didn't know about National Adoption Month until last year, but now she's reflecting on the full picture of her adoption.

Last year, I learned about National Adoption Month for the first time. I reflected on my adoption story, allowing myself to think about what my adoption meant to me.

When I reflected on my story, experiences and upbringing, my mind was immediately filled with gratitude. My brother and I both had positive experiences growing up together, as we were both adopted as infants. We knew adoption was a part of our family’s story from the beginning.

As a child, I rarely thought about my birth parents or culture. I didn’t feel out of place since I had other friends who were adopted, or grew up in Vietnamese families. I learned about the culture, ate the food and celebrated the Tet Festival every year. But honestly, I didn’t think too much about adoption’s role in my life.

Continue reading “The Full Picture Of My Adoption”

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”

Adoptee Perspective: A New Meaning to November

Adoptee Mai Anh Boaz had never heard of National Adoption Month before she started interning at Holt. Now, the month of November holds new meaning for her, and has inspired her to reflect on her own adoption story.  

Mai Anh Boaz.

During my first few weeks interning at Holt International, I remember sitting in the office and planning Instagram posts when I saw an article about National Adoption Month. Then, I remember asking, “There’s a month just for adoption awareness?” As an adoptee, I never knew people associated November with adoption. I loved the idea, but I was surprised I had never heard of National Adoption Month until this year.

Once I looked into previous posts and articles, I was intrigued by the multitude of stories from adoptees and adoptive families about what adoption meant to them. They were moving, inspiring and fun. Yet, reading other people’s stories made me realize that I never took time to reflect on my story. What does my adoption mean to me? How has this aspect of my life shaped me into who I am today? What would my life look like if adoption was not a part of the story? Continue reading “Adoptee Perspective: A New Meaning to November”

The Story Behind the Photo: 86 and Counting

collage-86-3

At the beginning of November, to kick off National Adoption Month, we shared a collage of all the children on our waiting child photolisting — just a small glimpse of the hundreds of children who we are seeking families for at any given time. We hoped it would kindle a passion in our supporters to help advocate for children who need loving families of their own. And it did!

You shared our waiting child stories. You reposted our advocacy blogs. You helped us tell the story behind each and every photo that we featured on social media during National Adoption Month.

The photo above represents the number of children from our photolisting that we have — thanks in part to your advocacy — matched with families so far in 2016. The black and white blocks represent the children who now are, or soon will be, part of a loving and secure family. The ones in color represent the children who we still need your help advocating for.

In total this year, Holt has matched 86 children from the photolisting — and another 200+ directly with a family! This is something to celebrate!

But we seek a world where every child has a loving and secure home. And until that day comes, we intend to keep working hard to advocate for the children left behind — and we ask you to join us.

One of the best ways that you can support our advocacy efforts is through sharing the stories we post about waiting children. That can be anything from pressing “like” or “share” on Facebook to leading an informational meeting in your community. Creativity is encouraged and we look forward to hearing what you come up with!

Thank you again for your heart and compassion for children who need families. Allied with you, we can achieve anything!
learn help advocate

Changing the Face of Thalassemia

Even 10 years ago, children living in orphanage care in China with treatable conditions like thalassemia were considered so difficult to place with adoptive families, many caregivers wouldn’t try to find families for these children — nor secure the medical care they needed. Through advocacy and education efforts, international adoption is changing the face of special needs. But the fight to ensure that every child receives the love, care and family they deserve is far from over. Continue reading “Changing the Face of Thalassemia”

The story behind my son’s waiting child photo

Like many families, Kelly Mayfield Meineke first saw her son August on Holt’s waiting child photolisting. But it would take months and some divine intervention from Holt’s China team for them to come together as a family.

Kelly is the author of Mine In China, a guide to adopting a child from China, and also blogs at www.mineinchina.com.

cen-zhe-yuan
This image of August was used on Holt’s waiting child photolisting to help find his family.

My husband and I adopted from China for the first time in 2013. An adorable little boy, Leo, came home to my husband, our four children and myself, in time to celebrate his 2nd birthday.

We knew before we left China with our son that we would be going back — though not immediately. After some adjustment time and a move to another state, we planned to start the adoption process again in May 2015.

In the months leading up to the start of our second adoption, I spent time advocating for children from Holt’s waiting child photolisting — which is the advocacy platform where we found our first son. In January 2015, I noticed a little guy had been added: “Soren.” He was completely adorable. He had a complex leg malformation, but I knew it wouldn’t be long before he found a family. Within two weeks “Soren” had “I have a family!” on his photolisting picture and I thought no more about him. Continue reading “The story behind my son’s waiting child photo”

The Story Behind the Photo: The Homecoming

Last year, California mom Amber Kanallakan and her husband adopted their son Oliver from China — a little boy with limb difference. They were featured on the cover of Holt’s 2015 annual adoption magazine. We’ve also shared some of Amber’s blogs about their adoption process and her advice about fundraising for adoption. Now, she shares about another part of their journey to Oliver — their homecoming.

olivers-home-9
Friends and family gathered at the airport to welcome Oliver home from China. Photo by Jacki Potorke Photography

During our adoption process, I often dreamed of the moment we’d walk through the double doors of the airport foyer, holding our long-awaited and already dearly loved son, and introduce him to our people.

Considering the sleep deprivation, hunger pains and overwhelming emotions, I’m impressed my brain has held onto the details of our actual homecoming like it has. Continue reading “The Story Behind the Photo: The Homecoming”