Did you know that NAFA is a member of the Coalition of Oregon Adoption Agencies (COAA)? We are a non-voting standing member. A few years ago, COAA voted to only offer memberships to Agencies and Home Study Providers. At the time, NAFA and Adoption Mosaic were allowed to be grandfathered in as non-voting members. With the closure of Adoption Mosaic, we are the only such entity.
Two requirements must be met: an annual membership fee and attendance at 2/3 of the monthly meetings (there are usually 9 per year). As the current board president, I attend these meetings. I really enjoy knowing representatives of the adoption agencies and hearing the latest trends and laws affecting the adoptive culture. Instead of having the narrow focus of how my adoptions played out, I now have a frame of reference that includes agency, state, international, and foster adoptions. I learn how the state is treating adoption, special needs adoption, adoption assistance and licensing of agencies. All this helps in my preparation for the Waiting Family Meetings and Baby & Toddler Care Class that I coordinate for NAFA.
I want to share with you some of the information I have picked up at the first two meetings in 2016.
- -Dove Adoptions International has closed.
- -After it’s closure, Adoption Mosaic made a $620.23 donation to COAA
- -Sally Guyer resigned from Boys & Girls Aid Society (BGAID) effective 2/5/16; Sally will be working with the Parent Mentor Program at The Morrison Center.
- -May 2016 is the next SNAC (Special Needs Adoption Coalition) Training at BGAID
- -April 1-3 DHS Training for foster and state adoptions
- -Holt is in need of adoptive families for the Korea and China programs
- -George Fox University is graduating it’s first class of Masters in Social Work; many of the candidates are looking for internships in Adoption.
- -Uganda may be closing to USA adoptions
- -Laura Moag has resigned as director of Catholic Charities Pregnancy Support & Adoption Services; Laura will now be working with Oregon Post Adoption Resource Center (ORPARC). Catholic Charities is reassessing it’s needs before naming a new director.
- -State Senate Bill 1515 is on a fast track through the House & Senate– this affects how adoption agencies are monitored for licensing and affects the information given regarding background checks. Right now agencies receive a pass/no pass judgement on families they serve, but are not given a reason for a “no pass”. Only the applicant receives the explanation for a “no pass”. They are then given 60 days to file an appeal.
- -Kelly Myrick-Duckettt from the Background Check Unit presented at the February meeting. She explained the background and fingerprint process. The State of Oregon is part of a 10 Western State Coalition . The state runs fingerprints through the records of these 10 states. If any flag appears, it is then researched and a judgement is made. If a FBI case # is discovered, the file is sent on to the FBI. If no flags appear in these 10 states, the fingerprints are then sent off to the FBI for a nation wide search. This process takes approximately 4 weeks. With new criteria in State Senate Bill 1515, this process will take 4-6 weeks. (Still better than the state of Alaska’s 6 month average wait time!)
Some of the information I gather is helpful for knowing who to contact regarding promotion of our events. Some information makes me realize adoption is as complicated on the agencies’ end as it is on our end! But we are all working for happy, successful families!
If you want additional information on any of these topics, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit oregonadoptionagencies.org