National Adoption Awareness month is important to the adoption community and in even more recent years has been celebrated more with community events, special adoption ceremonies at courthouses in November and above all, a heightened awareness about older children in the foster care system who are hoping to find permanent homes.
The History of Adoption Awareness Month
In 1976, Massachusetts was looking to gain awareness of adoption efforts. Mike Dukakis, the governor at that time, issued a proclamation that the first week of November be known as “Adoption Week.” In 1984, President Ford made it a national week of celebration and awareness. Though President Reagan issued the first Adoption Month in 1995, it wasn’t until 1998 that President Clinton made November National Adoption Month, also known today as National Adoption Awareness Month.
The goal in general is of course to raise awareness about adoption and its unique nuances from understanding birth parent and birth mother perspectives to providing resources for those seeking to adopt. This is also a month to fundraise for adoption related charities and not for profits and to attend awareness events. However, this is primarily a month dedicated to raising awareness of the over 400,000 children in the foster care system who are hoping to be adopted.
For more information on the history of National Adoption Month and how you can get involved, visit childwelfare.gov.
Why We Celebrate Adoption Awareness Month
Adoption is so important to so many. This is a month when many birth mothers share their stories to help others understand their position and alleviate the stigma that surrounds them and their decision to make an adoption plan.
This is an important time to heighten awareness about children in foster care, share their stories, and to ensure that those who are interested know what steps they have to take to provide a permanent home for a child in need.
We use this time to teach people about appropriate adoption language and attend local events that raise awareness about the organizations in our community supporting adoption. We also use this time to concentrate our efforts on gathering items to donate to adoption agencies that may need supplies for those who have made the decision to parent but need support and those who have adopted and need a few supplies to get them started as they likely haven’t had a shower.
What You Can Do to Celebrate and Recognize National Adoption Awareness Month
- Donate to organizations Look for local not for profits that need your support. This can be adoption agencies, local organizations that support foster care, etc. There are a lot of people that need funds to ensure that they can continue to provide support to individuals in the adoption community.
- Like and Share posts from agencies and organization’s social media pages Not everyone has extra funds to donate, but what you likely do have is access to social media. Find organizations that you are passionate about and share their posts. You’ll notice that even LinkedIn will have more awareness posts that you can share with your network. This helps raise awareness in a way that is easy and efficient.
- Go to or host a fundraiser You may begin to see recognition dinners or other fundraisers in your area to support adoption. Consider attending an event. If there isn’t one in your area, consider hosting your own to support an organization centered around adoption.
National Adoption Awareness is a great way to spread information about the adoption triad and foster care. Consider what you can do to help with these efforts.
If you have questions about adoption, reach out to Adoption Choice, Inc.