November is National Adoption Awareness Month

Adoption agencies, adoptive parents and families, adoptees, and others will celebrate the annual National Adoption Awareness Month in November.

The first politician to sign a proclamation recognizing the commemoration was former Governor Michael Dukakis when, in 1976 the need for adoptive families was brought to light by foster parents.

Various businesses and other groups celebrate the month in different ways, from luncheons, to awards ceremonies, to newspaper articles among other avenues.

You can go to and download a free tool kit to use for your celebration planning. The site advises making plans early to get help from politicians. There is also an events calendar on the site with book signings, speakers, lectures, and workshops among other activities related to adoption awareness.

You can also light a candle, share ideas, use an Adopting a Child postage stamp, donate, have an adoption party, contact bookstores about fundraising, write a letter to the editor about a positive adoption experience you had, and send a virtual card to those involved with adoption. There is also a listing of adoption articles and books on the website. Some local adoption groups plant a tree at a park and present a plaque to those involved and libraries sometimes do adoption book displays.

In 2001 the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) published a guide of many ways to celebrate Adoption Awareness Month which you can order online for $10 at

Ever year the Month carries a theme and this year’s is “Answering The Call.”

Nov. 19th is National Adoption Day when numerous children have their adoptions finalized in court and other jurisdictions all across the country every year and is celebrated as part of National Adoption Awareness Month.

At there is a list of 37 ways to commemorate the month.

Orange County (NY) Adoption Group has a candlelight ceremony every year.

Other creative ways supporters have made the month special are inviting a birth mom to lunch, making a bumper sticker or poster, attending a rally, going to an adoption conference, donating books related to adoption to libraries or foster homes, offering your home to a family in town to adopt a child, treating a social worker or adoption professional you know to a meal, and serving as a foster home for the weekend among others.

To plan for bigger events for the next year since it takes eight to 12 months for preparation, it is suggested that you form a coalition of local, regional, or state agencies, and adoption groups and agencies and find sponsorships and participation from local businesses such as banks, Kiwanis Clubs, Jaycees, grocery stores; etc. You can also have an adoption fair, plan a workshop, hold an adoption breakfast for state legislators, establish and publicize an award to a business or individual who has made a difference in the adoption community, and have an adoption information night. These are all suggestions from Perspectives Press ( who publishes adoption-related books.

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