In this five-part series from 2006, we present the diary of Mary Ella, an intercountry adoptive mom. She shares the journey she and her husband, Wayne, took to Korea to meet their long-awaited daughter, Leelee.
Three years ago, Dave and Juanita Alexander found themselves halfway around the world with 18 suitcases, 12 carry-ons, a year’s worth of supplies and four children. Dave and Juanita, have collectively lived and worked in five countries (including Canada), and have four beautiful children through adoption. In 2012, they uprooted their lives to move to Uganda for a year. Since then, they have settled back into their daily lives in Langley and continue to enjoy new adventures together.
A passion for culture
June 2015 will mark the eighth annual Roots Celebration within Okanagan First Nation Territory, the land of the Syilx people. The event serves Indigenous children and youth in care by helping to instill in them a sense of pride, honour and respect for their identity and heritage. Organizers and participants represent many Nations and bring together the best of what they have to share over a weekend rich in Indigenous cultural experiences focused on children and youth.
The importance of cultural connections
In a previous article, I wrote about the Exceptions Committee in the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD). The article was prompted by a list of questions that the Adoptive Families Association of BC had gathered from their membership. There were additional questions related to Aboriginal adoption in BC that I will endeavor to answer in this follow-up article.
By looking at adoption in other places, other cultures, and other times we hope to open our minds and develop a deeper understanding of ourselves, each other, and our roles in the world of adoption. In this post we visit Japan with Sophelia, an Australian expat and adoptive mother to one Japanese son.
The history of Aboriginal adoption
The history of the colonization of Aboriginal peoples in Canada can be a difficult and complex topic. The term Aboriginal is used in BC legislation to encompass First Nations, Métis, and Inuit peoples. Aboriginal people were subject to laws, policies, and programs designed to assimilate them into Euro-centric mainstream culture. In the area of child welfare, this culminated in the “60’s scoop,” where many Aboriginal children were removed from their families and placed for adoption with families of European descent.
Are you thinking of adopting a sibling group? Before you decide, ask the following:
Most new adoptive parents are between the ages of 30 and 50. That can make it difficult when adoptive parents are much younger.
Thanks to the recent publicity around celebrity adoption, some people claim that adoption has become the latest parenting trend.
That sort of comment annoys adoptive parent Laura Livingstone. As a 25-year-old parent she’s heard similar remarks all too often, and not just from people outside the adoption community.
Leach Buchholz shares her thoughts on her adoption from Korea and her quest to discover answers.
The day I met Leah Buchholz at a Vancouver coffee house it was her birthday—at least she thinks it was—she’s not quite sure. The exact day she was born is one of the many answers that this thoughtful young woman, adopted from Korea almost 20 years ago, is on a quest to discover.
In the second of our series, we present the edited diary of Mary Ella who is in Korea with her husband Wayne, only hours away from meeting their long-awaited daughter, Leelee—at least that’s what they think…
Day #3, June 28
Well, today is the big day! I am trying really hard to keep my excitement at bay. We don’t know exactly what will happen, but Wayne feels they won’t let us have Leelee until tomorrow. I agree, but I had better be prepared. I figure the office will be open around 8am, so I probably have a couple of hours. Ugh!