Claire Stamley’s Success Story

Claire Stamley’s Success Story

By Aurora
“My name is Claire Stamey. I live in N.C, and I got pregnant by one of my best friends in 2007 at the age of 38.  I am white and he is black.  This was my 3rd baby.  The birth father and I decided to look for biracial couples to adopt her.  We ended up finding what turned out to be the perfect couple, Chris and Ruth Traylor in California.  The adoptive Dad and I have similar interests and talents.  We all decided on an open adoption Zoe was born 3 weeks or so premature.  She is nothing short of a miracle.  Chris and Ruth often sent me pics, and we all kept in touch on Facebook and the phone. Sadly, Ruth passed away-in December,2016 from complications of Lupus.  Chris is now a single Dad raising Zoe himself and doing a wonderful job.  Chris and Zoe keep in touch with

Two Adoptees Reflect on How Adoption Changed Their Lives

By Aurora
We asked adults who were adopted as children from foster care the question, “How has being adopted changed your life for the better?” Here is what two incredible individuals had to say: Ashli Carnicelli “I was adopted from the foster care system in the state of Massachusetts. I was placed with my parents in November of 1983 and my adoption was finalized on October 18, 1984 when I was almost 2 years old. To say that being adopted has changed my life for the better is an understatement. My parents were only 2 weeks into their classes and their dossier and they were on the list for an older child (up to 6 years old). My social worker wanted to find the perfect home for me, and she pulled their file. She said, “Sometimes you have to throw away the paperwork and go with your gut- this baby was meant

From Fostering to Adopting: Mallory Williams’ Journey

By Aurora
Photo courtesy of Mallory Williams We had the wonderful opportunity to interview Mallory Williams, who runs the Instagram account @five_2_and_under, and is a mom to Chase and Dylan, who she fostered before adopting, and triplets Avery. Emery, and Bradley. AFFEC: What influenced your decision to become a foster parent?  MW: Since my husband and I got together we’ve always had the dream of adopting. As a drug & alcohol therapist in a correctional setting, I witnessed firsthand some of the hardships that these children have to go through. We also thought it would be great to help the children in our immediate area, giving them the best life that they could have. AFFEC: What are some challenges/rewards of being a foster parent? MW: Some of the challenges we faced included the altering of our schedules on a whim, the unknown and the difficulties with the court

Featured Family of the Week: The Hawking-Johnsons

Our Featured Family of the Week: The Hawking-Johnson Family Judith Hawking and Kenneth Johnson live in the suburbs of New York and are ready to welcome a child(ren) into their home. Take the time to read about our featured family of the week!“Hi! We are Judith Hawking and Kenneth Todd Johnson. I was born and raised in Canada and then moved to the States for school. Todd and I fell in love, so I am lucky enough to be a Dual American/Canadian citizen. My husband, Todd, was born in Savannah, Georgia. He grew up in South Carolina and we visit his terrific family there, and my family in Canada, as often as we can. We love to be active and live near two gorgeous parks. You can find us in one of those at least five times a week with our two dogs, Romulus and Remus, who love to get out

“Unconditional Love” Bud Hennekes’ Adoption Story

Blog writer Bud Hennekes shares their personal adoption story with a beautiful essay entitled “Unconditional Love”. “It’s safe to say that one of the greatest feelings in the world comes from the warmth of being unconditionally loved. Whether that mean the love of your spouse or partner, or the connection you share with your mom or dad. Or even the loving bond between your siblings and friends.I’m extremely grateful for all the love that I’ve had in my young life. But the truth is, there are many parts of the world where unconditional love is lacking. With wars taking place each and every day, messy political battles, starvation, and greed; the world needs you more than ever.Because even in the darkest of alleys, remains the fact that we as humans are meant to love. I wrote this essay nearly 4 years ago during my sophomore year of high school, and

When Scary Really Isn’t All That Fun

As Halloween approaches I cannot help but remember my own childhood and the fun and fear that October 31st always brought for me.  I was like any other kid… I loved getting free candy!  I loved the sheer genius of a holiday that encourages children to ring the doorbell of strangers and gladly take their sweet offering.   Every other day of the year I was told not to talk to strangers, and certainly not to accept candy from strangers.  However, the great exception to this rule happened once a year. I knew it and so did everyone else. But other than dressing up and getting free candy… I hated the scary aspect of the night.  I hated that things I could not see would jump out at me.  I did not enjoy the breathless feeling of fear that would grip my heart as we approached a scary house. I never

How Holly Found Her Forever Daughter

Many of our success stories focus on the path a child or set of siblings takes from foster home to forever family.  But we recognize that the parent’s story is also worth telling — and hearing! — especially as so many other potential adoptive parents might wonder what’s in store for them. Holly’s story of wanting to adopt, recognizing how important it is to wait for the right situation, and ultimately finding a forever daughter to welcome into her life is an encouraging one for hopeful adoptive parents.  Her experience shows that with patience and persistence, adoption can happen in all kinds of ways. Here is her story, “I can’t believe it’s been over three years since I started my adoption journey!  I’ve learned many, many things regarding adoption over these three plus years, but the one thing I’ve only recently come to realize is that potential adoptive parents /

Carly’s Success with Family Finding

When children enter their teens, their drive to know who they are and where they come from increases dramatically. Carly is a prime example of a young woman determined to connect with her parents no matter what the consequences. The teenage Carly was a bit rebellious and was having difficulty in her placements. She had been in and out of the local Safe Center several times during her adolescent years and seemed restless. The case was referred to Family Finding by the Department of Human Services caseworker, with a focus on the paternal side of the family. In the interim, Carly decided to take matters into her own hands. Having a name and location, she ran away to Idaho to find her biological mother. She was successful. Unfortunately, the experience was less than what she expected and she ended up being restrained and unable to get back home. Her biological

Somebody Stood up for Me: We Can Reverse the Effects of Childhood Trauma

By Esta Soler Founder and CEO, Futures Without Violence. Huffington Post April 2014 Speaking of his seemingly improbable success in 2007, then-Senator Barack Obama said, “I will never forget that the only reason that I’m standing here today is because somebody, somewhere stood up for me when it was risky.” Recognizing those who helped him succeed, Mr. Obama touched on a simple yet critical truth: When faced with obstacles and adversity, we need the dedication and care of others to help us succeed. In April 2014, a committed group of elected officials, public health researchers and children’s advocates gathered in Los Angeles to stand up for the children in California who live with a much more stark set of realities — children who have suffered trauma and who don’t have the dedication and care that they need to thrive. Led by Assembly member Roger Dickinson and Dr. Robert K. Ross

Sean and Kellie’s Teen Adoption Story

Our Adoption Story – Sean and Kellie Sean and I had tried for years to conceive and eventually went through the whole fertility testing process.  We were told that we were able to get pregnant, but that it was unlikely.  It was heartbreaking news. It took a couple of years before we decided that we were ready to adopt.  We had discussed it many times and were both “open” to it, but I think we were always hopeful that I would get pregnant in the meantime! Once we actually decided to start the adoption process, we looked first at the international avenues of adoption and the adoption of a baby through a private agency.  At the same time, as I met with God daily, I felt him stirring in my heart the idea that He wanted us to adopt an older child.  I easily dismissed this feeling because I WANTED