Press Release

MORE DISCUSSION OF PET ADOPTION THAN HUMAN ADOPTION DURING NATIONAL ADOPTION MONTH

DONALDSON ADOPTION INSTITUTE SOCIAL MEDIA ANALYSIS REVEALS NEED FOR UNIFIED VOICE

MEDIA ADVISORY: For Immediate Release

CONTACT: April Dinwoodie – (212) 925-4089 – adinwoodie@adoptioninstitute.org

New York, December 3, 2014 –The Donaldson Adoption Institute (DAI) today released a social media analysis of National Adoption Month (NAM), revealing that conversations about pet adoption continue to be more robust than those about human adoption.

DAI, a research hub for ethical adoption laws, policies and practices, analyzed social media messages surrounding NAM and found that even with the legacy of powerful organizations focused on foster care adoption and the addition of new dynamic voices, the conversation about human adoption lags behind that of pet adoption.
“DAI has been spent many years researching the topics that matter most to the adoption community. Our analysis of social media surrounding NAM reinforced that additional work needs to be done in order to encourage a more robust dialog about adoption reform,” said April Dinwoodie, Chief Executive of DAI.

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CATS AND DOGS GET MORE ATTENTION THAN HUMANS. When it comes to adoption, pets dominate social media attention – leaving children far behind.

For nearly 20 years, National Adoption Month in November has championed finding adoptive families for children in foster care. Officially promoted by the Children’s Bureau in the Department of Health and Human Services, NAM is also supported by AdoptUSKids, Child Welfare Information Gateway, as well as non-profit leaders like The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.

The focus on foster care is absolutely critical, but as the adoption reform movement advances, NAM is taking on more dimensions. An expanded conversation is beginning to take shape, highlighting the many layers of the lifelong adoption experience.

Today, NAM offers an opportunity to shed light on adoption from many different angles. “Flip the Script,” a grass-roots video project, is a poignant example of how members of the adoption community are claiming the opportunity to enhance the dialogue and ensure their voices are heard. New perspectives are being shared and new voices are gaining momentum.

“Adoption is an incredibly personal, sometimes joyful – and sometimes traumatic – experience for children and parents. As another NAM comes to a close, we are faced with a unique opportunity to increase the dialog to ensure the adoption experience is not treated like a one-time transaction but rather a lifelong journey,” Dinwoodie said.

About The Donaldson Adoption Institute

The Donaldson Adoption Institute is a unique think tank that is the pre- eminent research, policy and education organization in its field. Its mission is to better the lives of everyone touched by adoption by providing leadership that improves laws, policies and practices through sound research, analysis, education and advocacy. Since its founding in 1996, DAI takes a holistic approach by considering the needs of adopted persons, birth/first parents, adoptive parents, their extended families and professionals. For more information, please go to www.adoptioninstitute.org.

Special note: DAI loves pets, but we love children, too.