Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Projects-Adoption Conference

I have mentioned a time or two on here that I am on a small committee planning a really exciting regional adoption conference. The conference is November 6-7 and is sponsored by a support group called Families Supporting Adoption, which is sponsored by LDS Family Services.

It's coming up in a few short weeks so while I've been working hard on it almost every day for the past six months, we're down to crunch time now. Besides doing planning the logistics, I've been in charge of the food/catering for the entire weekend and the speakers -- which entails choosing speakers, planning times for breakout sessions, keeping in contact with speakers, collecting biographies on all speakers, etc. I've also booked hotels for out of town speakers not to mention attending hours and hours of planning meetings.

More than one person (including my semi-supportive husband) has asked me why I do this. It's totally volunteer and I already volunteer plenty for the church. Besides planning this conference, I've planned a couple other smaller ones this year, helped organize a family BBQ, hosted a couples game night, put together gift baskets for birth mothers, tested a new website for the agency's headquarters in SLC, etc all this year.

I've given 'why I do it' some serious though lately. And I've decided there are several reasons.

I do it because I love and am passionate about adoption. Of the unwed women who become pregnant, 50% will abort their babies. And less than one percent will place their babies for adoption. I have tons of close friends who are waiting to adopt. One dear friend in particular has been waiting for years to adopt her second child. It's heartbreaking to be in that situation -- trust me I know. And if I dare say it, it's almost worse to see someone else suffer like that too. If I can be an advocate for adoption and encourage even one woman to place her baby, than all this will be worth it.

I do it because we would like to adopt again, and I hope that rubbing shoulders with the staff at the agency will help.

I do it because I hope that my friendships and associations with wonderful birth parents will not only help us to find another baby, but to learn everything possible to help us navigate the emotionally complicated world of adoption. Both now while we are in the adoption trenches, and later when our children have their questions and concerns.

I do it because I've met some terrific friends that share similar lives to mine. I am very lucky that everyone in my life that loves me also loves adoption and supports us wholeheartedly. But there is something so special about adoption and birth mothers and the highs and lows along that way that only a fellow adoptive parent can truly understand. I love spending time with those friends.

I do it because I want my children to know other adopted children.

I do it because somebody asked me to and I can't say no.

I do it because I genuinely like to volunteer and so I might as well volunteer doing something exciting and with people I enjoy.

With all that said, please spread the word about our upcoming conference!

"Families by Divine Design" is the theme for this Regional Conference, which will have information to help families interested in adopting, families that have already adopted and are seeking insights to their children's growth and development, extended families of couples who are involved in adoption, and birth families of adopted children.

Friday, November 6th
Saturday, November 7th, 2009

The conference fee is $25.00 per attendee, $35.00 per couple.
There is no fee for birth parents to attend.

Check out some of our great and exciting presenters!

Elder Marvin Brinkerhoff- Area Seventy
General Session Speaker
Topic: Adoption: A Principle of the Gospel
What is the doctrinal and spiritual foundation of adoption? Understand the role the temple and family sealing play in adoption, and how gospel understanding can bring peace to the adoption process.

Lindsey Redfern- Adoptive Mother and Adoption Advocate

Author of this blog:

the r house button

General Session & Breakout Session Speaker
Topics: The Divine Design of My Adoptive Experience, and Adoption Advocacy

Katie Shelley- Featured Birth Mother on LDS Family Services Website ItsAboutLove.org
General Session and Breakout Session Speaker
Topics: The Divine Design of My Adoptive Experience, and the Birth Parent Panel

Troy Dunn- Host of the television program, "The Locator"
Broadcast of his Keynote Presentation at the National FSA conference.
Troy Dunn, who has become known as "The Locator" from hosting a television show that reunites loved ones, will speak of the lessons he has learned while working in his profession- specifically about adoption. He says that reunions between birth parents and children usually help the adoptees leave with a greater appreciation for their parents who raised them and a better understanding of the incredible sacrifice a birth mother made.

Monica Blume- LCSW and Co-author of this book:

Plus many more speakers and topics!

Don't miss out!!

Go to this website to register or to get more information about the conference:


Myndi said...

Sounds amazing. I really wish I could go. Here's a wierd questin: does the conference offer CEUs?

Nicki said...

You constantly amaze me - do you need volunteers to help out that weekend?

R said...

You are incredible. Keep up the good work!

J said...

And we're glad you do it, becuase without efforts from people like you the blessing of Buddy and Sambo wouldn't happen in our family or in other families. Keep up the good work.

paula said...

I would like to help....