Adoption is an option. That’s the message Kim Harrell of Catholic Charities in Arlington, Va., wants women with a crisis pregnancy to understand. Most only see two options: parenting their child or having an abortion.
In presenting adoption as a third option, Harrell, director of pregnancy services and adoption, helps expectant mothers understand what adoption looks like. The agency practices open adoptions, where birth parents and adoptive parents know each other, exchange letters and photos, and sometimes visit together with the child.
“Adoptions are very different today,” says Harrell, “It’s not about birth mothers going off in secret and never knowing anything about their child.”
Arlington’s adoption program also handles special needs infant adoptions. When some women or couples find that they will have a baby with special needs, they do not feel able to parent that child. The agency has found families for children with Down’s Syndrome, HIV-exposure, limb deformities, and other medical issues.
Through the adoption services provided by Catholic Charities in Arlington, mothers can choose life and bring their children into the world and receive assistance in giving their children families with the necessary resources to care for them.
Harrell has seen the hand of God in the amazing and beautiful ways families have come together through adoption.
“You just can’t take God out of the equation,” she says. “God created those families.”