Education & Support During the Wait Time
November 20, 2008

Education and Support During the Wait Time

The Wait Time is a wonderful time to consider joining with other families pursuing an adoption from China to gain support, information, and to meet other adoptive families.  Families with Children from China (FCC)  is a non profit, volunteer-driven organization offering support meetings to families who are in various stages of the China adoption process.  FCC’s goal is to provide education and support to families.  Some area chapters have created Waiting Groups specifically designed for those families currently waiting for a referral from China.

The following example was provided by the FCC Waiting Group in Portland, OR:

Each month we host a free meeting, open to families living within the Portland metro area, working with any adoption agency, to offer topics relevant to China adoptions. Here are some of the topics we cover at Waiting Families meetings:

• The first hours with your baby or child (how to ease your child's transition)
• Who are Waiting Children? What is the Agency Shared List? (covering some of the common special needs)
• Home One Year ( Panel of families who have been home from China speak about the changes in their lives with a new little one at home)
• What kind of medical issues do institutionalized children face? 
• What medical tests should be run once home? (We invite a medical professional, familiar with China adoptions, to speak on this topic)
• Travel in China
• Basic Mandarin for China travel
• Chinese culture and holidays
• What is a Lifebook- How to create one
• How to pack for the trip
• Trans-racial Adoption Panel (adults from various races speak about being part of a multicultural family as a child)
• What is a homeland Tour
• Demystifying the matching room
• How to create an adoption video, view "family day" videos together
• How to create an adoption blog


One of the most popular features in the Portland, OR monthly meetings is the last half hour, which is reserved for returning families.  Families recently home from China share with the group how their trip went, which airline they chose, what they took that was a must have, and how their child adapted from the first hours to the present. This helps make the surreal process of international adoption become tangible.  Families gain a sense of community as they wait with others from all over the area, and then come home with their children.  FCC-Portland Waiting Families group also helps families transition into the adoptive family community when they bring their children home.  Families have already met other families along the journey and have developed a supportive community.

Families in Oregon are encouraged to view the following link: http://www.fcc-oregon.org/

To find a local FCC chapter in your state where your family can get involved, please view the following link:
www.fwcc.org

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