Last week, on October 15 and 16, Holt Children’s Services of Korea celebrated their 60th anniversary with an international conference and a gala dinner in Seoul.
To acknowledge this important milestone, first generation Holt adoptees traveled to Korea to be a part of the historic event. The first wave of adoptees were also pioneers in the process of international adoption and in addition to connecting, or reconnecting with the country of their birth, they also connected with one another.
For some, it was the first trip back. For others, it was a familiar journey. But for all, it was a memorable experience that was highlighted with the 80th birthday celebration of Molly Holt, daughter of Holt founders Harry and Bertha Holt who has devoted her life to caring for orphaned and vulnerable children in Korea. While the sights and sounds of the city are always appealing, the group also traveled to Jeonju Babies’ Home — a care center for children supported by Holt International. Spending time with the toddlers and babies brought back memories and thoughts of “what ifs” to many.
The trip to Ilsan is always the centerpiece of a visit to Korea. Sitting at the grave site of Harry and Bertha Holt and visiting Molly and the residents of the Ilsan Center for children and adults with special needs is a profound reminder of where this all began. These adoptees — along with thousands of others worldwide — are the legacy of the unwavering commitment of Holt founders Harry and Bertha Holt 60 years ago.