Connecting Hearts Adoption ServicesPost submitted by Amy Imber, Executive Director, Connecting Hearts Adoption Services, Orlando, Florida

Honored Recipient of the Human Rights Campaigns “All Children All Families” Seal of Recognition

When HRC Foundation’s All Children – All Families Program asked me to submit a blog for National Adoption Month, I thought that it would be a great opportunity to share with the world my passions for adoption and working with the LGBT community. I also wanted to give some encouragement to those within the community who want to adopt, but fear they will be discriminated against.

As I sat down to write, I thought about the recent victories for marriage equality and how more and more same-sex couples are choosing adoption. I thought about all the families I have been honored to work with. From traditional domestic adoptions and second parent adoptions to LGBT families considering adoption through the foster care system, our clients run the gamut, and they have taught me so much over the years.  

As a straight ally to the LGBT community, I have learned more from my clients than they could ever learn from me. I have learned how unfairly LGBT couples are sometimes treated. Some couples that have been together for more than 20 years are still not able to dedicate their lives to one another with a legally recognized marriage in Florida. I have met with couples who despite their desire to adopt, kept hitting brick wall after brick wall simply because they did not know where to turn to find LGBT-friendly adoption agencies. I have met with clients who have been mistreated by narrow-minded doctors and teachers because they are gay or lesbian parents trying to do what is best for their children.

All of our client families have taught me about the power of love, acceptance and dedication.  They have taught me that the world is still a cruel place and we need to do our best to make it a better place for our children. They have taught me that unconditional love begins with yourself. Our client families have taught me that the LGBT community is a wonderful and loving community in its own right, and a powerful one at that.

If you are interested or want to learn more about LGBT adoption, check out the list of HRC Foundation’s All Children – All Families participating agencies.

This November, HRC is proud to celebrate National Adoption Month. Throughout the month, HRC will recognize the adoption agencies that participate in our All Children – All Families Project, demonstrating their commitment to improving outcomes for LGBT youth in foster care, and welcoming and supporting LGBT families. Stay tuned to HRC blog throughout the month for more adoption stories.

Filed under: Adoption

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