Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Growing up in a family

I just read an interesting blog post, originally posted on July 21, 2010.  It appears on Both Ends Burning, an organization run by Craig Juntunen, which bears the same name as his book. Their mission is stated here:

Both Ends Burning is a campaign to reform the current system of intercountry adoption so that more orphaned children can grow up in loving, caring homes. Our goal is to make intercountry adoption more affordable and less bureaucratic. Both ends of the adoption spectrum are troubled: Orphaned children need loving homes, and willing families face undue barriers to adopting them.
One statement in this post resonated with me:
There is no greater basic human right than a child’s right to grow up in a family.
Never before have I heard such a succinct expression of the heart of adoption. It its purest form, this is what adoption is all about.  In my trolling of the internet, I have read of some exceptions to this experience (adoptees who were misplaced into abusive families, child trafficking, etc.), but I applaud Both Ends Burning's campaign to bring adoption back to its essence: giving a child the right to live in a family. They work tirelessly to make intercountry adoptions more affordable and less bureaucratic. They are not quick to scoop up children who are orphaned (or appear to be orphaned) in times of national crisis and ship them overseas. If possible, the birthfamilies should be located and birthfamilies hopefully will be willing and able to take care of the child(ren). If not, orphanage stays should be minimal.

Isn't this what adoption is all about?

Perhaps I am too idealist and optimistic. But I do believe that everyone has the right to experience the unconditional, foundational (sometimes too-close-for-comfort-and-get-under-your-skin) love that comes from being part of a family.

Readers, do you agree with me? Or are my ideals too high and unattainable?


Third Mom said...

Absolutely your ideals are attainable. I personally would be more comfortable with a program promoting intercountry adoption if it had clearly stated goals that also promoted family preservation where possible, Hague standards etc. No mention of Hague on this site. That doesn't necessarily mean that the program doesn't support it, but it would be really good for programs like this to say so, and to make their commitment to ethical adoption public.

JBH said...

@ Third Mom: Agreed - referencing Hague standards up front would be more comforting.