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Sharon
I'm a writer, a wife, and mother to three exuberant, internationally-adopted children.
Interests: I publish Whatever Things Are True: the Good, the Bad and the Beautiful in the World of International Adoption because I'm interested in child welfare, child rights and promoting healthy, happy families worldwide. I believe adoption is the best option for children who cannot receive care in their families of origin, and I support ethical adoptions that meet the needs of vulnerable children. My writing has also appeared in print editions of The Sun Magazine and Adoptive Families Magazine, and online at HuffPost Parents, Adoptive Families Circle, and Mama Manifesto. Look for me on twitter @sharonvanepps.
Recent Activity
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What advice can parents raising black children give their children that will protect them in a racist world? Continue reading
The Christian Orphan Care Movement has been under scrutiny for several years, and much of it has been unfair. At the same time, changes are needed to promote better outcomes for children. Check out this powerful and gutsy post from... Continue reading
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Veteran journalist Marilyn Berger is not by nature an impulsive person. Her friends describe her as "measured," "very thoughtful," "an intellectual." Yet Berger, now 74, has fallen deeply, passionately -- and instantly -- in love twice in her life, with... Continue reading
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I've got a new post up at Adoptive Families Circle where I'm sharing some resources I've turned to when I've faced challenges as a parent. The piece includes a mention of social worker Regina Kupecky, on the staff of the... Continue reading
As emotions over US-Russia adoptions intensify, a rift widens into a chasm. The Christian Science Monitor published an article yesterday describing how the issues around intercountry adoption have created the biggest rift between Russia and the US since the Cold... Continue reading
Russian officials retreated from accusing a Texas woman of murder in the death of a 3-year-old boy she adopted from Russia, as the cause of his death remained unclear. Russia late last year banned adoptions by American citizens, and news... Continue reading
As always, thanks for reading and commenting, Jessica. I really don't think EJ Graff intended the piece to come off that way, but I think that attitude that blames the "damaged child" is one of those ugly stereotypes that creeps in when folks don't realize it.
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E.J. Graff's piece on the murder of 3-year-old Max Allen Shatto for Slate advances the offensive stereotype of the damaged, demon adoptee. It's time to stop blaming the children. Continue reading
The Horizon program, which runs on Pennsylvania PBS affiliate WQED, takes a look at four adoptive families who are embracing the Ethiopian heritage of their children. You can watch the episode at the link. WQED Multimedia: TV :: WQED On... Continue reading
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Bedria Williams, an Ethiopian adopted teen who ran away from her Oregon home last month, was found safe on February 9. Bedria's family made the announcement on their Facebook page without further details. All the best for Bedria and the... Continue reading
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UPDATE: Bedria Williams was found safe on February 9. This story has been haunting me ever since I heard about it yesterday. Fifteen-year-old adoptee Bedria Williams of Oregon, who came to the US at age 9 from Ethiopia, is missing.... Continue reading
Sharon is now following M.J. Rose
Jan 31, 2013
Sharon added a favorite at Backstory
Jan 31, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill., Jan. 11 (UPI) -- A couple from Evanston, Ill., are fighting to keep custody of their 7-month old adoptive daughter, whom South Korean officials say was adopted illegally. via www.upi.com Related articles Evanston Couple Fights To Keep South... Continue reading
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Studio Samuel is collecting new and gently used bras for girls and young women in an Addis Ababa, Orphanage now through February 1, 2013. Continue reading
Elisabeth Smith, right, meeting the Russian boy she and her husband Charles are hoping to adopt In late October, Charles and Elisabeth Smith from Phoenix traveled to Borodino, Russia, to meet their prospective son, Malcom (not his real name), a... Continue reading
Cassie, Thank you for taking time to read and comment and share some of your story. I'm sorry it has been such a difficult journey.
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MOSCOW—Russia's foreign minister on Tuesday strongly criticized a proposal in the country's parliament that would ban Americans from adopting Russian children. Sergey Lavrov's comments—along with criticism of the proposal by other ministers—appeared to indicate pressure from the highest level for... Continue reading
This video produced by UNICEF Television promotes a positive program in Ethiopia to reunite children surrendered to orphanages with their parents, but it blames adoption, not poverty, for separating families. Continue reading
Hundreds of children have been stranded in orphanages in Guatemala for years as authorities there weigh whether to approve their adoptions by families in the United States. He calls them Mamá and Papi. They call him Hijo — Son. He... Continue reading
The Haitian government has started a campaign to try to keep parents from sending their children away simply because they cannot afford to support them. In the courtyard of one, Chris Savini, a missionary from Illinois, rocked a 10-month-old boy... Continue reading
The UNCRC hopes to ban "baby boxes" in Europe, where parents can safely leave unwanted infants. Many countries, including the US, have safe haven provisions/baby Moses laws in place to protect children. The UNCRC claims the baby boxes violate children's rights. Continue reading