Life & Faith: Adoption

Determining the best interests of a child in adoption is a complex balancing act of ethical issues.

“It’s a mixed blessing to see yourself in your kids,” says Geoff Broughton, the rector at Paddington Anglican Church in Sydney.

He’s only half joking.

As an adopted child, the first time he met a ‘blood relative’ was at the birth of his son. Watching his son grow up and take on his likeness stirred something in Geoff that he had never felt before – a desire to find out about his birth family.

By age 40, Geoff realized that he had to make a decision. He went from saying, “I don’t need to know”, to asking “Do I never want to know?” If he waited another decade, it might be too late.

In this episode, Geoff shares his story of reconnecting with his birth family and what his experience as an adoptee has taught him about the theological concept of adoption.

Also, we consider the fact that Geoff’s positive experience of adoption is not what many children in his situation face.

In Australia, 2013-14 figures show that more than 43,000 children were placed in out of home care. Compared to the 317 adoptions finalised in this same period, there’s clearly an overwhelming number of children in need of a permanent home.

Jane Hunt, CEO of Adopt Change, tells us the real stories behind these statistics, explains the need for adoption reform so that policies prioritise the best interests of the child.

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