Tuesday, August 13, 2019

U.S. Forces Parents Away From Adopted Children For As Long As Two Years

enior Contributor at The Federalist
Both trails lead back to an anti-adoption ideology currently governing the Office of Children’s Issues in the U.S. State Department.’
Luke and Brittney Stasi appear to have been victims of an unannounced policy change at the U.S. State Department keeping parents from bringing their adopted children home. Will Congress act?
Luke Stasi hasn’t seen his family since January. As his wife, Brittney, has been managing five children and a small business alone in South Carolina, Luke has spent the past seven months stuck in Africa with their sixth child, Victor.
It was December 12, 2018, when a Nigerian court finalized the family’s adoption of Victor, declaring the child (then age five) to be their son. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service duly approved the family’s I-600 application, recognizing the adoption. Yet as of this writing, eight months later, the U.S. Consulate in Lagos, Nigeria, has failed to issue a visa so Victor can come home.
As Americans continue to grapple with the separation of families at our southern border, a quieter immigration crisis is separating parents from children—not migrant families this time, but U.S. citizens. The Stasis are one of dozens of adoptive families facing a frightening new trend: an eleventh-hour stall in the international adoption process that leaves them stuck overseas with a child who is legally theirs, but is unable to enter the United States.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Hopscotch’s Ukraine Adoption Informational Webinar Tuesday, August 13th

hopscotchHopscotch’s Ukraine Adoption Informational Webinar
Tuesday, August 13, 2019 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM EST
Please join Hopscotch Adoption Ukraine Program Manager, Tonya Boggs, from your computer, tablet or smartphone to learn more about adopting in Ukraine. 
You can also dial in using your phone. 
United States: +1 (646) 749-3122
Access Code: 902-485-285
New to GoToMeeting? Get the app now and be ready when your first meeting starts: 

VFA: Join the 2019 Adoptive Family Portrait Project! Sign up and Share!

Join Us for the 2019 Adoptive Family Portrait Project!

For the 15th consecutive year Voice for Adoption (VFA) will be providing an extraordinary opportunity for foster care adoptive families across the nation. 
The Adoptive Family Portrait Project seeks to inform Members of Congress and their staff about the impact that adoptions have had in many of their constituents’ lives, by pairing adoptive families with their Congress member. With your participation, VFA will compose your family story and provide you with a hard-copy publication containing the stories of all participating families.Additionally, Members of Congress will display their paired family’s story in their Washington D.C office for the entire month of November, in support of National Adoption Month. 
These stories are extremely important to VFA as they help us to further educate and advocate for foster care and adoption. Please consider being involved in this incredible experience. 
For More Information Please Reference Past Adoptive Family Portrait Projects.
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Don’t Forget to Save the Date!
National Adoption Month Briefing and Portrait Project Display Reception
On Wednesday, November 13th, 2-4pm
Location: TBD Capitol Hill
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We invite you to become involved with our 2019 Adoptive Family Portrait Project.
Participate in this Project
If you would like to participate in our 2019 Adoptive Family Portrait Project, take the first step and fill out our survey here. Please respond to the survey by October 1st, 2019
Sponsor this Project
Here you can find sponsorship opportunities available for any budget.  Your support will help us ensure Congress members are aware of the joys of adoption from foster care. If you are unable to participate in this project please consider sponsoring it.
Encourage your Members of Congress to Participate
Please contact your U.S. Senators and Representatives to encourage them to be part of the 2019 Adoptive Family Portrait Project. Hearing from constituents greatly encourages members of Congress to participate in our project. Click here for a sample template for emailing your legislators.

Please help us make this year’s project a success by forwarding this email to anyone you think would be interested in our project! We look forward to your participation. To access more information about this opportunity click here
If you have any questions please contact me at 202-210-8118 or by email atsbaber@voiceforadoption.org.

Monday, July 8, 2019

PodcastOne: How Government Is Killing International Adoption

children-goldenkpOverregulation of international adoption is driving the industry into extinction. Jayme Metzgar, senior contributor at The Federalist and founder of the adoption non-profit Romania Reborn, joins Ben Domenech to discuss major issues with the State Department’s adoption policies and the failure to advocate for adoption overseas.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

AdoptTogether’s Top 5 International Adoption Agencies – Humbled and Honored To Be Included!!!

We have compiled what we hope to be a helpful list of agencies that specialize in international adoption. DISCLAIMER: This list is in no way a comprehensive list of all the good adoption agencies in the US. There are plenty of great agencies out there that are not on our list and we kept it to the top 5 simply for the sake of providing parents with a concise list.
We made our selections based on our research of each agency’s reputation, efficiency, and reviews from adoptive parents. Each agency is COA & Hague approved. Best of luck to you and your family as you find the best fit for your needs!

Why I Choose to Parent Two Children With Down Syndrome by Hopscotch Adoptive Parent Kelly Lahey

If you have considered adopting a child with Down syndrome, we would welcome the opportunity to share information with you about so many beautiful waiting children in Armenia, Bulgaria, Georgia, Serbia and Ukraine.  There is no waiting to adopt a child with Down syndrome that needs a permanent family, sadly only the children are waiting for a family to find them. Are you that family?  Talk to us today!  336-899-0068 or info@hopscotchadoptions.org

Monday, June 10, 2019

Mom pens moving thank you note to theme park staff for how they treated son with autism during ‘meltdown’

A mom is applauding the “magical” staff members at Universal Orlando Resort for their compassion and expertise in making her son’s experience at the theme park special during his first visit.
Lenore Koppelman posted a heartwarming story on Facebook about her family’s trip to the theme park in Orlando, Florida, on May 29, during which employees were responsive to her son Ralph’s needs every step of the way when he had what she called an “autistic meltdown.”

Thursday, June 6, 2019

State Department Making It Harder For Orphans To Find Families by Jayme Metzger

Adoption advocates ask the courts to block a crippling new State Department policy that would harm waiting families and children.
Jacques and Emily Rancourt have the kind of family you don’t see every day. Not only are they raising seven children—five through adoption—but most of their adopted children have life-threatening congenital heart defects. The Rancourts have spent so much time in cardiac care at Children’s National Hospital in Washington D.C. that they and another couple started a charity for families of children in cardiac crisis.
“Lily can connect with these children in the hospital like no one else can,” Emily says of her 9-year-old daughter, whose remarkable story includes receiving a heart transplant at age four. “She’s using the gift she was given to the maximum. She blesses people everywhere she goes.”

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Being Kind To Yourself and To Others

downloadThe man doesn’t know that there is a snake about to bite the woman.
The woman doesn’t know that there is a stone crushing the man.
The woman thinks: “I am going to fall! and I can’t climb because the snake is going to bite me! Why can’t the man use a little more strength and pull me up!"
The man thinks: “I am in so much pain! Yet I’m still pulling you as much as I can! why don’t you try and climb a little harder?!"
The moral is: You can’t see the pressure the other person is under, and the other person can’t see pain that you’re in unless you communicate!!
Credit: Sharon Wilkening, LPC, LCAS, CCS, LMHC

Friday, May 10, 2019

Celebrating 25 Years With Delicious Georgian Food

Dear Friends,
Georgian food is increasingly being recognized as one of the world’s most delicious cuisines, and was named 2019 Cuisine of the Year by USA Today.
Georgian restaurant Chama Mama has been making a splash on the New York culinary scene, and we are so excited to announce that Chama Mama will be sponsoring our Spring Cocktail Reception! They will be generously providing hors d’oeuvres, including Imeruli khachapuri (Georgian cheese bread) and beet pkhali on mchadi. Thank you Chama Mama and our wine sponsor Georgian Wine House for helping us celebrate 25 years in such delicious style!
We are so grateful to all our generous event sponsors!
Ruby Sponsor Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff
Diamond Sponsor Elizabeth Zaldastani Napier
Double Diamond Sponsor Jonathan Nelms
of Supra Restaurant in Washington, DC
And a special thank-you to our committee members who are helping to make this event happen!
Tatiana Sarandinaki-Kadaria, Gillian EddinsBob EddinsAna AlavidzeAna LejavaTeya Beradze and Eka Dzadzamia.
Thank you!
Experience & celebrate Georgian culture
Don’t miss performances from dancers The Pesvebi Ensemble, and polyphonic singer Nana Mzhavanadze, beginning at 6:40pm!
Your ticket makes a real difference!
Proceeds from the Spring Cocktail Reception will directly benefit AFG’s projects supporting Georgia’s most vulnerable citizens, including shelter communities for low-income children (like theBediani Center, pictured at left) and individuals with disabilities, a hospice program for the elderly, a higher education scholarship fund for former street children, and much more. Learn more about our work at afgeorgia.org