On June 29th, Pfizer ended its leadership conference, held at the Sheraton Hotel in Philadelphia. As part of the conference, there was a team bike building challenge partnered with Teamworx to compete in building 10 bikes. Everyone had a blast! The even more exciting part of the program was when Pfizer staff learned they had actually built bikes for 10 waiting children in the foster care system. The 10 children, coming from PA, NJ, and DE were all very happy to receive new bikes to take home as their own. The children also received helmets to keep them safe. Pfizer worked with Teamworx to make this successful event happen.

Most waiting children in the foster care system have probably never owned anything of their own as they unfortunately often get moved from home to home in effort of finding their forever family. If you would like to make a donation to the National Adoption Center in effort to continue its mission of recruiting for waiting children and supporting prospective families, please contact Ken Mullner to learn the different ways of making that a reality. 

Thanks so much to Pfizer and Teamworx for their amazing dedication to some very special children in our community. Pfizer also graciously presented the National Adoption Center with a check of $2,500. 


Many cities across the country recently celebrated the first Reunification Day to recognize the accomplishments of those who help parents regain custody of children placed in the foster care system. 

For years, the goal of reunifying children in foster care with their families has received short shrift. Even though most children come to the attention of child protective services for allegations of neglect, many are removed abruptly from their homes and placed with strangers. Once in foster care, they see their parents and siblings infrequently, change placements too often and receive inadequate medical and mental health treatment. Their parents rarely receive the help they need and they lack a meaningful voice in court. 

Keeping children in a harsh and often dangerous environment at home, or placing them in a stranger’s care. The Adoption Center believes an expedited adoption is the ideal option. What do you think? 

Think back to your childhood in the summertime! Do you remember hours spent outdoors playing with friends? 

That’s just what the Adoption Center’s Camp Match Party was like! We had more than 50 children, ages three to 17 who are waiting for their forever family, and 45 prospective adoptive families enjoy an outing to Tall Pines Day Camp in Williamstown, New Jersey on Saturday, June 26th. 
Our wonderful volunteers, most from Wawa, led the children and families around the campgrounds to play a variety of games and go on a hayride. The families got to see the children do what children do best, play! Many of the adults told us they enjoyed the activities at the campsite and, despite the heat, most of the adults were eager participants in the games with the children. The children and families all had a great time.
They also shared lunchtime together and got a chance to sit in the shade of the pavilions to talk and get to know one another. Families had opportunities to talk privately with the children’s social workers to express their interest and learn more about specific children. Ice cream and ices for dessert topped off a great summer day outdoors for everyone!
There were over 150 inquiries on the children from the families in attendance and we are hopeful for many potential matches that will become adoptive placements! 

Talented and focused, Larnie is going to be a great musician one day. He is learning to play the guitar and loves it. At the age of 15, Larnie is a typical teen. He likes R&B music, watching movies, and eating! In the 10th grade, he does well in school and gets along well with his teachers and peers. Enrolled in regular education classes, he enjoys science and math. In the future, he would like to attend college and become a biochemist.

Larnie recently had an amazing opportunity to meet Philadelphia’s local band Octane at WMMR studios. The band surprised Larnie with a brand new guitar! He played his new guitar with the band for a few songs and they were all impressed with his skills. Larnie writes his own songs and practices all the time. The members of the band gave Larnie some tips, and encouraged him to continue writing and practicing. As another surprise, WMMR gave Larnie tons of new CD’s to add to his collection.

The day was definitely a success! Wednesday’s Child host Vai Sikahema later sat with Larnie to talk about what he wants in a family. He expressed that he needs a family that will be supportive of his dream of being a musician. He knows that it will take a lot of hard work, and he needs a family to keep him motivated and show him unconditional love! All families will be considered. 

overnor Quinn of Illinois recently signed into law provisions for adult adoptive children to finally receive their original birth certificates. In the viewpoint of the National Adoption Center, making birth record information more accessible to adopted adults is a good thing and very important.

We receive numerous phone calls and emails from adult adoptees about the question of search and reunion with birth family. Often the first step is locating the original birth certificate. Adults who were adopted as infants or young children are the most common group of people searching for adoption information and birth relatives and most often the search is for the birth mother. When we can, we provide search resources to those who want to search but, unfortunately, the legwork is really up to the adult adoptee. The Center’s public policy supports the rights of adoptees to their original birth certificates and all medical and historical records. 

The new law in Illinois has some provisions on openness; effective immediately all children and parents involved in an adoption that took place before 1946 can get their birth certificates, however, for those in later situations, the state is going to spend one and half years notifying birth parents and adoptive adults that they need to contact the state to let them know if they wish to be found. After Nov 15, 2011, those involved in adoption can request birth certificates and if no other party has filed an objection, the birth certificate will be sent. 

Some adult adoptees just have to find their birth families to answer the questions about where and who they come from and what genetic traits they inherited. Others decide to leave Pandora’s box closed. They all deserve what those of us who are not adopted just take for granted; the ability to get access to their personal information when and if they want it.

Everyday after school Jamie loves coming home to watch her favorite cartoon, ‘Dora the Explorer’. Last week, at her Wednesday’s Child taping, Jamie took a trip to the Merriam Theater and was surprised when her favorite character was there to meet her! Jamie was so excited and couldn’t stop asking ‘You’re really Dora?’ Dora sung songs, and went exploring in the theater with Jamie. No one at the taping could stop smiling just seeing how happy Jamie was getting to play with her favorite friend. Not only did she get to take home stuff animals of the Dora characters, she also got free tickets to come back with her whole foster family to see Dora on stage the next day! It was such a great taping, and I can not wait to see her feature on NBC. 

Jamie is part of the Wendy’s Wonderful Kids program for Delaware, and is waiting for her Forever Family. I hope that after she is featured on Wednesday’s Child, plenty of families will see how beautiful and loving Jamie is, and will want to inquire about adopting her. She is such a happy and sweet girl who deserves a great home, preferably one with a Dora decorated bedroom! If you would like more information about Jamie, please contact, Amy Cressman, at or 215-735-9988 x319. 

I was catching up on some reading this weekend and came across this article from January's issue of Psychology Today Two-Minute Memoir: Alternate Family. Written by an adoptive dad, it explores the choice to assist his daughter in finding her biological sister. The sisters had been placed with two separate agencies and thus with separate adoptive families. 

The family had planned on waiting until the child reached 18 to let her do her own birthfamily search, if she felt she wished to at that point. However life had thrown some curveballs and the family decided to find the one sibling they knew about. In the article he explores the fear the family had and how they worked with their daughter to manage the situation. And the new world opened to them through adoption. 

Read the article to find out the details. What have been your experiences with the biological family of your child? Any tips or strategies you used? 

There is a new law which hopes to improve the adoption process in South Carolina. The improvements will come in two ways: (1) Time limits will be in place that will allow foster families to adopt children more quickly and, (2) It will put less emphasis on keeping birth families together, in cases where the parents are substance abusers or mentally ill. (Full details here)

Do you think these actions will result in more adoptions of children in the foster care system? What other measures can we take? 

Yesterday we were involved at a fundraiser thrown on our behalf at the gorgeous Overbrook Golf Club. Sue Burt & Bridget Devine, the Chairs of the event, did a fabulous job of bringing together so many women to raise money for our Center. 


The day began with raffle items inside and refreshments outside on the deck overlooking the golf course. We had displays discussing and promoting some of our programs while Adam andGramercy Boutique, who provided the fashions and accessories for the fashion show, also showed select items.


This fun was followed by a short but serious program featuring a family who have adopted four children (three from one sibling group) in addition to the four they already have. Theirs was a poignant story of wishing to keep siblings together and the realities of blending so many children together. They seem to be handling it beautifully! 

Finally we had lunch, with a fashion show and the raffle drawings. All told this event raised over $22,000! Thanks to all of the fine women who attended the event. And a special thanks to those who were on the event committee:

Nora Brady
Lesley Coulson
Michele Chupein
Kathy DePillis 
Lara Evans
Jennifer Franklin
Beth Hines 
Missy Kathol
Christina Kearney
Stephanie Kraus 
Donna Maple
Gina McHugh
Meg O’Grady
Erin O’Neil
Julie Powers
Bridget Rahr
Maria Schreder
Stephanie Shaw
Anna Slack
Rory Whitaker
Krissa Wichser
Khaki Young
Shannon Zeller

We look forward to seeing you all next year! 

On Friday we bid farewell to two of our interns (the third was stuck in finals). We had a lovely lunch and shared many laughs. A couple of weeks back we shared the post of one of our interns, below is the second one, from Eryn.

Although I have only been with the National Adoption Center for about two months, I feel like I have learned enough to have been here for three years! It is amazing the time and energy that is put into every little detail that we do here. They have really taken me in and made me feel welcome to the “family”. 

Personally, I have really taken a huge interest in the match parties. I don’t know whose genius idea it was to have families and foster children come together in a fun and relaxed atmosphere to get to know each other, but it was a FANTASTIC idea! So may of these children have lost all hope to finding a family and these parties instill a hope in them that they lost a long time ago! The people involved work hard so that the party is fun and effective for the children and the families that want to adopt! 

I have been working hard on trying to find new ways to get the word out to people that we need help and donations to make these parties something to remember for the kids. It is a lot easier said than done! However, a few very generous people have helped us out so far and given us hope that more people will follow their lead. I know people want to do good things and it is up to us to find those people and give them a good reason to help us out!! 

I have really taken this internship to heart and I have even started to consider staying in the adoption field and making a life out of it once I graduate from Villanova. I have truly experienced the pride in helping others since I have been here. Everyone at the National Adoption Center puts their hearts and souls into helping these kids and reaching out to the community!