Catholic Charities to host first birth parent support meetingWritten by Staff Reports | | email@example.com
To mark November as National Adoption Month, Catholic Charities is starting a monthly birth parent support meeting for new and expectant parents who are considering making an adoption plan as well as those who have already placed child for adoption
The first meeting will be 7-8:30 p.m. Nov. 20, at the Catholic Dioceses of Toledo, 1933 Spielbusch Ave. Future meetings will be on the third Thursday of the month at the same time and location.
The meetings will provide a safe place for attendees to share experiences and have questions answered by professionals as well as both birth and adoptive parents, said Program Coordinator Lynette Worthy, a licensed social worker and adoption assessor.
“We want it to be a safe place where they can talk and meet others,” Worthy said. “Many times with birth parents, we know what they are doing is courageous, unselfish and loving, but we don’t talk about some of the grief they go through from this choice. Even if it’s a good choice, they may have some issues surrounding it.
“Working with birth moms, you never know when they might need a support or a pick-me-up,” Worthy said. “Maybe this month you’re feeling great, but next month is your child’s birthday. This is a place to say, ‘I think I made a good choice, but it’s still hard.’”
Offering the chance for prospective birth parents to hear directly from other birth parents about their experience is a major benefit, Worthy said.
“Many women know the word adoption, but they don’t have a lot of information, especially first-hand from other birth mothers,” Worthy said. “It’s a nice way to not only honor birth parents, but take away some of the mystery and fear out of adoption.”
The group is open to both women and men, and anyone is welcome, whether they have adopted through Catholic Charities or any other agency. Light refreshments will be provided.
Catholic Charities has been facilitating adoptions since the 1950s.
“We were a natural choice to step up to the plate and do this,” Worthy said. “This is a safe place. We have enough history to have a long-term view. It’s been on our radar for a long time and we just felt November was a great time to kick it off.”
Worthy said Catholic Charities is seeing more involvement from birth fathers as well.
“More and more fathers are coming into our offices, offering support to mothers,” Worthy said. “Not all the time, but definitely more than we use to see. I think it’s important men feel welcome too.”
If a mother ends up choosing to keep her baby, Catholic Charities can also provide or direct her to parenting assistance, Worthy said.
“We’re just here to help make sure parents feel supported and their children end up in safe, stable and loving homes,” she said.
For more information, contact Worthy at 419-244-6711, ext. 227, or firstname.lastname@example.org.