Sunday, September 8, 2019

Highlighting Walk for Adoption Chicago: A Day to Celebrate Adoption

Introducing Walk for Adoption Chicago Providing the Chicago Suburbs with Adoption Resources and a Day to Celebrate Adoption

Walk for Adoption Chicago Brings Families Together Celebrating the Beauty of Adoption

Walk for Adoption Chicago will bring families together to celebrate adoption on Saturday, September 28 at Lake Arlington in Arlington Heights. Walk for Adoption Chicago began in  2010 as way to celebrate the positive side and experiences of adoption. The annual event provides an opportunity to celebrate adoptive families and birth mothers while forging a supportive network. During the event, families can interact with others following a similar path while enjoying a fun family outing. Over all, the day is one of sharing the beauty of families built in different ways.



Families celebrating adoption at Walk for Adoption. Image credit Walk for Adoption.
Families celebrating adoption at Walk for Adoption. Image credit Walk for Adoption.
Recently, I caught up with Christy and Michelle who are the organizers of Walk for Adoption Chicago. They shared with me the background of Walk for Adoption Chicago, how it got started and resources available to families.

How did Walk for Adoption Begin?

After adopting her first son, Christy was looking for a way to give back. She joined a support group eventually becoming the chairman of that group. For Christy, Walk for Adoption Chicago created an event to highlight the positive and beautiful side of adoption. As an adoptive parent, there were times that Christy felt completely alone. She did not want anyone else to feel that way.  Michelle joined the walk initially as a participant and an adoptive parent. Michelle sees the walk as a way to celebrate the uniqueness of families built through adoption. It also provides a way that families can connect and receive support. Over the years, the walk has grown from 70 participants to 400+ at last year's walk. The event has become an occasion of not only family fun but connection.

Christy and Michelle at Walk for Adoption! Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.
Christy and Michelle at Walk for Adoption! Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.

The Beauty of  Walk for Adoption Chicago:

During The Walk, families that probably would never have come together join to celebrate their uniqueness. Families can come out, have a picnic and network with other families. They can also talk to professionals and get support.

Michelle detailed: "Everyone is celebrating something here. There is always someone celebrating an adoption and building our families in different ways."

With open adoption, some families also incorporate birth mothers. Overall, the day is full of families enjoying a walk, picnic and other fun together. When the kids come together and see other families like theirs, they know that they are not alone.

Michelle further explained that when you start talking, your learn about how many people are adopted. The Walk leaves here with great memories of hearing stories of adoption. She is very thankful for those stories and the opportunity to share her own.

Enjoying family activities at Walk for Adoption Chicago. Image credit Walk for Adoption.
Enjoying family activities at Walk for Adoption Chicago. Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.

What Will You Find at The Walk for Adoption Chicago:

The Walk for Adoption Chicago offers a chance to talk to other parents and adoption professionals. Plenty of family fun will engage participants including carnival games, a disco party, balloon artist, bounce house and more. There will be several vendors featuring adoptive moms with a business. Lunch will be from Buona Beef. What a complete day for the family!

Celebrating family at Walk for Adoption Chicago. Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.
Celebrating family at Walk for Adoption Chicago. Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.

Chicago Area Families For Adoption:

Christy and Michelle are co-presidents for Chicago Area Families For Adoption or CAFFA. CAFFA can provide resource suggestions for adoptive and potential adoptive parents. Every two years, CAFFA holds a conference with adoption professionals focusing on all elements of adoption including foster care, special needs support, domestic adoptions, international adoptions and more. People from throughout the country attend the conference for support in adoption.

CAFFA Camps Kaleidoscope and Camp Pride Korea help children adopted from other countries learn about and explore the cultures of their birth countries. The two summer camps are day camps that involve music, art and dance. They forge a way to build connection through culture and even build ties with kids from their home countries.

How Can You Join The Walk For Adoption Chicago?

Walk for Adoption Chicago for 2019 will be held September 28 from 9:30AM-1:30PM at Lake Arlington in Arlington Heights. You can register online on Walk For Adoption Chicago's website. If you register by September 10, your registration will include a t-shirt, snacks, Buona Beef catered lunch, entertainment and access to adoption resources. Late registration runs through September 21 but will not include a t-shirt.

Join a day of family during Walk for Adoption Chicago! Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.
Join a day of family during Walk for Adoption Chicago! Image credit Walk for Adoption Chicago.

A Day for Celebration and Connection:

Walk for Adoption Chicago provides a fun and festive avenue for families to celebrate, share and connect. Each walk brings awareness to the positive sides of adoption and allows adoptive families to revel in their joys. Walk for Adoption Chicago offers such a warm, positive and uplifting event supporting adoption and providing resources for families here in the Chicago area.  A big thank you to Christy and Michelle for sharing more about the upcoming walk and CAFFA with us!

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