From its start, the Center has partnered with the media to spread the word that adoption is not just for babies, and that the adoption process is not as formidable as some people think. The media has been instrumental in raising public awareness about the 123,000 children in foster care who currently wait to be adopted.
In the tri-state area of Southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware, the Center features children on the Freddie Mac sponsored Wednesday"s Child on NBC10 with Vai Sikahema, on KYW Newsradio's Wednesday's Child feature with Larry Kane, in weekly features in The Philadelphia Inquirer's" Monday's Child" and The Philadelphia Tribune's,"Tuesday's Child" and on the new, weekly"Raise Me Up" adoption feature on WFMZ TV. The Center is available to consult with and provide written materials to adoption professionals on how to successfully work with the print and electronic media in their geographic areas. The Center created written materials for adoption professionals on how to select and prepare children for media appearances. These materials and consulting services on child preparation for recruitment opportunities are available to adoption professionals in their geographic areas.
The Center also conducts public awareness and education training at workshops and child welfare conferences around the country, and has published the results of its family recruitment efforts in adoption journals.
Match parties have been a core service of the Center in the tri-state area of Southeasten Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware for more than 25 years. A match party is a carefully planned event designed to bring together children waiting to be adopted with approved, homestudied families interested in adopting them. The Center holds match parties designed for specific types of children; teens, sibling groups and children of all ages. This Center recruitment strategy provides opportunities for children and teens to connect with a potential family. The children and teens participate in an entertaining day that focuses on them and gives them the chance to meet other children who are waiting to be adopted. These events enable children to participate in the effort to find their adoptive families.
The Center has created numerous match party materials, including a Guidebook to Match Parties that is available to adoption professionals considering initiating match parties in their geographic areas. Consultation to replicate the Center's successful teen matching events, held throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania is also available to adoption professionals in their geographic areas.
Adoption Recruiters here at the Center actively engage the children in the process of finding permanent families. They meet regularly with each child to plan recruitment, review the child's files to find potential connections, and prepare the child and potential families for adoption.