National Adoption Month is about spreading awareness about adoption. While we celebrate the adoption process all year, November is a month to encourage others to do the same! It is a month that focuses on educating people about adoption, holding events to bring awareness to the topic, and acknowledging those whose lives have been touched by adoption.
With so many children waiting for their forever families, National Adoption Month is a great time to talk about adoption. It also sheds light on many adoption-related resources available to birth mothers, adoptive parents, and adopted children. Let’s explore the history of National Adoption Month and some exciting ways you can spread awareness in November!
What Is National Adoption Awareness Month?
National Adoption Awareness Month is a national effort to shine a light on the adoption process. The primary purpose of this effort is to:
- Honor families involved in the adoption journey.
- Recognize the hundreds of thousands of children still waiting in the foster care system for permanent families.
- Spread awareness of adoption.
- Advocate for the wellbeing of children.
- Share vital resources to help birth parents through all aspects of the adoption process.
- Ask for community and business support of adoption.
- Provide everyone with the opportunity to get involved in various ways.
When is National Adoption Awareness Month?
The original adoption-related effort started as a seven-day effort through the first week of November. National Adoption Awareness Month was extended in 1998 to include the entire month of November.
What to Know About National Adoption Awareness Month
The History of National Adoption Month
National Adoption Awareness Month rose from a small adoption-related effort in 1976 in the state of Massachusetts. Wanting to promote the need for adoptive families in the foster care system, Governor Mike Dukakis proclaimed the first week of November as “Adoption Week” in the state of Massachusetts.
In 1984, President Reagan made this a national effort when he proclaimed the first week of November as National Adoption Week. By 1998, the effort had taken off and become widely recognized. There wasn’t enough time in just one week to fit all the adoption-related events planned throughout the country. Hence, President Bill Clinton expanded the awareness effort to the entire month of November.
In 1998, President Clinton also directed the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to develop a plan to expand the use of the internet to help find homes for children waiting to be adopted from foster care. This only increased the adoption-related awareness efforts as people began to take to the internet to spread the word.
How to Support National Adoption Awareness
During National Adoption Month, everyone can get involved! Individuals, families, businesses, private and public organizations, cities, states, and the government throughout the United States celebrate adoption in November. It is a time to celebrate the journey as a positive way to grow families.
Across the United States, events and observances highlight the mission of National Adoption Awareness Month. Through events like volunteer recruitment, recognition dinners, fundraisers, community activities, and highlighting personal stories, we honor those who have made a difference and support those involved with the process.
One of the most exciting events we see across the nation is National Adoption Day, typically held on a Saturday in November. This profound event is observed in court hearings where thousands of adoptions are finalized simultaneously!
Everyone Can Get Involved
Whether you are pursuing adoption, an adoptive or foster family, an adopted child, or a supporter of the cause, everyone can participate in National Adoption Month! Here are some examples of how you can support this significant effort:
- Educate yourself on the history and purpose of the month.
- Share information with your family and friends.
- Attend a local event in your community.
- Donate money to a fundraiser or local adoption or foster care center.
- Volunteer your time with an adoption or foster care center.
- Reach out to a family you know to learn more about their experience.
- Join a local support group to help other parents.
- Share your own journey online or at a local event.
- Connect with other families through online forums.
You can get creative with your ideas and even start your own local event. If you are an adoptive or foster parent, consider creating a family tradition to celebrate the month. If you want to support someone you know or even strangers within your community, consider doing one of the following in November:
- Share National Adoption Awareness Month information on your social media using #NationalAdoptionMonth and #ConversationsMatter.
- Mentor a child who is aging out of the foster care system.
- Speak to elected officials to urge them to support these efforts in your local community.
- Talk to your children about what adoption is.
- Organize a local drive or fundraiser.
- Ask your local library to feature a section of positive adoption books for the month.
An important point to consider when it comes to National Adoption Awareness Month is that not everyone involved in the adoption process celebrates their journey. Some individuals struggle to cope with an element of loss or grief through their personal experience with adoption. Be understanding and accepting that everyone is different.
Learn More About National Adoption Awareness Month
Want to learn more about adoption or National Adoption Month? Texas Adoption Center can give you access to countless resources. If you wish to explore your options or find support in your journey, we’re here to help! Our compassionate team offers the caring support you need to answer your questions.
Contact us online today or give us a call at (512) 893-7943 to learn more about adoption as we celebrate National Adoption Awareness Month this November!