For Immediate Release: Nov. 12, 2014
Recognizing that Adoption is a Lifelong Journey, Florida’s Adoption Reunion Registry Helps Adoptees, Birth Parents Reunite
TALLAHASSEE—Recognizing that adoption is a lifelong journey, the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) offers Florida’s Adoption Reunion Registry to provide birth relatives and adopted children the opportunity to reunite.
The Registry is the only program in Florida that reunites adult adopted individuals with members of their birth families without either party needing to take court action. The Registry is a voluntary and confidential cross-referenced file of the people who were the principal parties in an adoption. It is available to adult adopted individuals over the age of 18, adoptive parents, birth parents, maternal and paternal grandparents, birth siblings and siblings of the birth parents.
“We are proud to be able to offer this service to individuals who are adopted through the Florida foster care system because we know that many adopted children are naturally and rightfully curious about their birth families,” Interim Secretary Mike Carroll said. “Sometime the process of finding your birth family can be difficult and heartbreaking but it is more often filled with love, surprises and relief that can help bring about a more full and complete family of both adoptive and birth relatives.”
The Registry does not initiate searches for birth families. If two or more people impacted by an adoption in Florida list themselves on the Registry, then the Registry gets them in touch with each other. There is a onetime $35 fee. The fee may be waived if there is a proven financial hardship. There are currently 10,190 individuals listed in the Florida Adoption Reunion Registry –55 percent are adult adopted individuals, 38 percent are birth parents, 7 percent are grandparents, siblings or other relatives. The Registry averages three to four successful matches each month.
Weekly, as part of the National Adoption Month the DCF website, MyFlFamilies.com, will feature blogs written by adoptive children and parents. Today’s blog, at http://blog.myflfamilies.com/category/adoption/, features Mark Bono who was adopted as a child and found his birth family through the Registry. Mark writes in his blog, “Meeting on the phone was life-changing in itself, but meeting in person was a whole different story. That missing piece was fulfilled. When I look at her, I can tell I’m her son.”
To register for Adoption Reunion Registry services, an applicant must complete the Adoption Reunion Registry Form which may be obtained by calling the Florida Adoption Information Center at 1-800-96-ADOPT or visiting www.AdoptFlorida.org/ReunionRegistry.shtml.
Media Contact: DCF Press Office, (850) 413-0771