Adoption & The Right To Search

$5,985 of $75,000 goal

Raised by 23 people in 7 months

Many intercountry adoptees have a great desire and need to access information and reconnect with their biological family, and their country of origin. This can be very difficult for individual adoptees and their families who have little or no knowledge of how to navigate systems overseas and who require professional support and counselling in both Australia and overseas. Australia has facilitated over 10,000 intercountry adoptions since the 1970’s. These adopted people deserve the right to ongoing services. Our aim is to continue to provide professional support to Australian intercountry adoptees to connect with their history and birth families overseas.

Since September 2016, International Social Service (ISS) Australia, a small independent not-for-profit and non-government organisation has provided an Intercountry Adoption Tracing & Reunification Service. This free service provides information, support and counselling alongside facilitating searches overseas for Australian intercountry adoptees and their families.

The Australian Government’s Department of Social Services (DSS) funded the service, however ISS Australia received extremely disappointing news in February 2018 that DSS funding would not be provided past June 2018, noting that ISS Australia would need to seek alternative funding in either the corporate or philanthropic sectors in order to continue the service.

Our mission
The Tracing service has been very successful in its brief period of operation, establishing strong partnerships with overseas tracing partners, achieving many positive outcomes (including locating 50 biological families’ overseas as well as facilitating 15 family reunions) and building up to its current level of over 200 clients. The closure of the service would be a devastating outcome for intercountry adoptees who have begun their search through the service; a service that was launched less than two years ago, offering free search assistance, with such strong hopes and acclaim from service beneficiaries and others in the adoption field around the world.

Why crowdfunding?
The reality is that if ISS Australia cannot obtain alternative funding in this very short timeframe, then the service will need to be closed, with experienced staff made redundant, partnerships with overseas tracing services abandoned and most importantly, over 200 clients left without care and support from the workers they have come to know and trust.

 As one of our clients so eloquently stated: “If a country decides to allow intercountry adoption, by default, the same investment and equal flow of resource and money needs to go into the post adoption services.  This is no longer an ethical or moral understanding, but with all the evidence we now have on hand, this should be built into underpinning policy and procedures on a national level.”

 Unfortunately the Australian Government have decided not to continue funding our Intercountry Adoption Tracing Service, which we know is one of the greatest needs for Australian intercountry adoptees. Therefore in order to continue the service in some form ISS Australia is making a concerted effort to obtain alternative funding through corporate and philanthropic partnerships and have also set up the Go-fund-me page.

 “I was excited to hear ISS has funding for a tracing and reunification service, when I first started tracing my birth family there was no professional service which could help me and I had little support in the end I stopped tracing, so it’s wonderful to work with an organisation and receive feedback from them and also knowing I will have support should I need it regarding reunification.  Tracing is a timely, daunting, tiring and emotional effort and can be costly doing it by yourself.  I think ISS service is 10 out of 10 and I hope ISS can continue to help myself and other adoptees in tracing their birth family and or their birth history.”

 Ways you can help
·  Any contribution amount would be appreciated so please share within your networks. The aim of the Go-fund-me page is to raise money for the overseas search costs.
·  On average ISS Australia pays our overseas search partners $600 AUD per case so if we can raise $75,000 AUD this will at least allow overseas searches to continue for our current caseload of Australian intercountry adoptees.

Please note ISS Australia has DGR (deductible gift recipient) status and can provide tax deductible receipts. Please email ISS to request a receipt, with your full name, at issnsw@iss.org.au .

Website:  http://www.iss.org.au/our-services/intercountry-adoption-tracing-and-reunification/

+ Read More
Damon Martin - Manager, ICA Service has written to all States and Territories Ministers requesting a meeting to discuss their potential contribution to funding the Intercountry Adoption Tracing Service (which was previously funded by the Australian Government). Furthermore, ISS Australia has obtained a philanthropic grant to employ a Business Development Manager for 6 months. Kate Fisher has been appointed in the role and will be attempting to obtain philanthropic grants to obtain funds for the continuation of the Intercountry Adoption Tracing Service.
+ Read More
Thank you for everyone’s ongoing support: for sharing our campaign, donating money and writing to the Minister of the Department of Social Services.

Last week we received some further disappointing news. Despite our letter to Minister Tehan expressing very strong concern with the decision by DSS not to renew our annual funding for the ICA Tracing Service and the numerous support letters from other NGOs and the intercountry adoption community, we now clearly know that Federal Government funding will not be provided. Our Intercountry Adoption Service Manager, Damon Martin traveled to Parliament House and met with Minister Tehan’s representative who stated our initial 2 years of funding allowed ISS Australia to establish an Intercountry Adoption Tracing Service that was welcomed by intercountry adoptees and their families. We were also encouraged to continue the service by considering alternative funding models.

Therefore, we are now strongly focused on philanthropic funding opportunities and any additional funding from this campaign.

The money obtained through the Go-Fund-Me campaign will:
- allow ISS Australia to continue paying overseas searchers for our current and ongoing cases
- any further funds could allow ISS Australia to continue the ICA Tracing Service in some form, i.e. with skeleton staff.

Please continue to share the word for us and we will keep you updated as things unfold.
+ Read More
A big thank you to everyone for their generous donations and distribution of the go fund me page amongst their communities. We have now successfully raised around $2000, which is enough to cover 4 overseas searches. We are overwhelmed by the amount of shares our page has had and the support we have received from everyone.

Staff at ISS Australia have been busy in challenging the decision that has been made by the Department of Social Services (DSS) to no longer continue funding the service post June 2018. This has included:
- Writing letters to relevant ministers
- Encouraging individuals and organisations to send letters to relevant ministers
- Submitting the review of the service to DSS
- Seeking alternative funding options

We are ultimately aiming to keep this service going and with your support we are one step closer!

Thank you and we hope that you continue to distribute our go fund me page and support our cause!
+ Read More
Read a Previous Update

$5,985 of $75,000 goal

Raised by 23 people in 7 months
Your share could be bringing in donations. Sign in to track your impact.
We will never post without your permission.
In the future, we'll let you know if your sharing brings in any donations.
We weren't able to connect your Facebook account. Please try again later.
1 month ago
Tim Hocking
3 months ago
3 months ago
4 months ago
Ken Edgley
4 months ago
5 months ago
Catherine Dorward
6 months ago
Michelle Mcpherson
6 months ago
6 months ago
Gabby Malpas
7 months ago
Use My Email Address
By continuing, you agree with the GoFundMe
terms and privacy policy
There's an issue with this Campaign Organizer's account. Our team has contacted them with the solution! Please ask them to sign in to GoFundMe and check their account. Return to Campaign

Are you ready for the next step?
Even a $5 donation can help!
Donate Now Not now
Connect on Facebook to keep track of how many donations your share brings.
We will never post on Facebook without your permission.