Thank You For Staying Connected To Gladney

Posted by Lisa Schuessler on 6/16/20 10:00 AM

So far, 2020 has been a weighty year in our country and in our world. In some ways, it feels like time is moving slowly, and yet, it is hard to believe it is already summer. As we continue to deal with COVID-19 and social distancing and identify how we can best support families in having conversations with their children about racism, we know flexibility and collaboration are key. We are listening, learning, and making connections, in order to serve our clients well. We have hope—the lessons we are learning and conversations we are having will lead to growth, resources to share, and a brighter future.

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Topics: Gladney Leadership, Development

Connecting Gladney Families

Posted by Luke Byford on 5/17/20 2:35 PM

The first weekend in May is a special time for Gladney and Gladney Families because it is the annual retreat for the Gladney Family Association (GFA) leaders. Gladney adoptive parents and adult adoptees come from all over the United States to connect, learn, and discuss how to better fulfill Gladney’s Family for Life promise in their home communities, in addition to building lifelong friendships. This year, like so many other things in our lives, we took the GFA Leadership Equipping Retreat to a virtual model. On Saturday, May 2nd, Gladney Ambassadors gathered around their computers for a full day of education and collaboration. Their passion for and commitment to advocacy mean the future for Gladney Families looks bright.

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Topics: Gladney Family Association, Development

Gladney's 2019 Annual Report - Expectant Mother Services

Posted by Natalie Bowen, LMSW-TX on 5/15/20 12:56 PM

Today, the expectant mothers we serve have more complex needs than the clients we served 10 years ago, and we have adjusted our services to meet them where they are.

Expectant mothers experiencing unplanned pregnancies and mothers with young children who contact us considering making an adoption plan are sometimes coming from a challenging, vulnerable place. While some expectant mothers have a strong support system and access to resources, others may be in an abusive relationship, unemployed, experiencing homelessness, or have mental health or substance abuse treatment needs. The women Gladney serves range from teenagers to women in their forties, with an average age of 26, and 49% of the women already have other children. More than 70% of the women are from Texas, and the remainder of the women are from other states across the U.S., including 15 states outside Texas in 2019 alone.

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Topics: Gladney Birth Parent, Gladney Home, Development, Annual Report

Gladney's 2019 Annual Report - the Gladney Home

Posted by Natalie Bowen, LMSW-TX on 5/11/20 7:45 AM
As we shared in the 2019 Gladney Annual Report, Gladney transitioned the purpose of our residential home to be the Gladney Home for foster youth, serving girls between the ages of 11 and 17 who are seeking permanency through adoption. Our current referral partners are Child Protective Services, Our Community Our Kids (CPS Foster Care Region 3B - North Texas), Family Tapestry (CPS Region 8 - Bexar County), and 2INgage (CPS Region 2 - Northwest Texas).

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Topics: Texas Foster Children, Gladney Home, Development, Annual Report

Gladney's 2019 Annual Report - A Letter from the Board & President

Posted by Gladney Center for Adoption on 5/1/20 6:45 AM

Dear Friends,

Our passion and belief were as strong in 2019 as they were in 1887. Every Child Deserves a Loving and Caring Family. Because of you, 211 children started their new lives in a forever family last year. Whether from an orphanage or foster home, or from a courageous expectant parent making an adoption plan, EVERY one of these children deserves the security and love of a family, and you made that happen.

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Topics: Gladney Leadership, Gladney Culture & History, Development, Annual Report

Unexpected Joy

Posted by Gladney Center for Adoption on 4/23/20 8:38 AM

This April, 37 years ago, the day began as a normal one . . . heavily in the throes of tax season, getting ready for some meetings, and taking care of things for my father as my mother had passed away not quite two weeks earlier. Then at 9:00 am, the phone rang, and news that our baby girl was here was on the other end of the line. It was Mrs. Stafford, our Gladney Caseworker and "the very most important person in our lives.” In our minds and those of many of our friends, she held the key for our future as a family. Now having years of history with Gladney, I know Mrs. Stafford and many other very wise professionals were part of a very educated, emotional plan for the creation of our family and, needless to say, a plan for our children’s' birth mothers.

It was now about 10:00 am. I had laundered the gown I had purchased for this baby and was ironing it for some crazy reason - would she ever notice? Probably not. The doorbell rang, and it was a precious friend, bringing me flowers to lift my heart for missing my mother. She was greeted instead with huge tears of joy because our daughter Claire was now here!

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Topics: Adoption Stories, #wearegladney, Development

From a 2020 Gladney Senior

Posted by Gladney Center for Adoption on 4/22/20 9:40 AM

Who would have thought I would be standing in the kitchen with my family in mid-April of my senior year when the governor made the announcement we were done? Deep down, I had a feeling this was coming, but it does not make it any easier. I left my high school on March 12, 2020, for spring break, unaware I would never walk back into the school as a student again. It leaves me... well, it leaves me heartbroken.

In August 2016, I began high school as a wide-eyed, nervous, awkward, metal-mouthed, and excited freshman. I had no idea how the next four years would shape me into the person I am today... a strong, confident, God-fearing, young woman, ready to take on the world.

I am the person I am today because of the people and experiences I have had over these past four years. I have had experiences that not many other high schoolers can say they have had, and I have met people who have pushed me to be the very best I can be.... people who encourage me to chase my dreams and improve every day.

From leading a student organization I started during freshman year to marching in the Rose Bowl Parade last year, I leave knowing I gave these past four years all I had to offer. I am walking away from high school knowing what it means to work hard and to persevere through hardships. I am walking away knowing the power of the connections you make with others and how those connections can lead you to do really great things.

I am crushed. I really am. I had no idea I would not see my third graders again and would not have any more study sessions at "my special table" at the top of the main stairs, where I spent many 4th periods, class times, and even after school hours. I did not know I had my last college math class in room 2465, where we stood outside and talked until the bell rang, forcing us to go in and get to work. I am going to miss the high fives from coaches in the hallway, my classmates, my teachers, and even parking in Timbuktu and walking in after interning at the elementary school. It hurts a lot knowing I am not going to have these experiences anymore, but I am looking forward to the day when I can go back in and reminisce on all of the memories high school gave me and talk to teachers again who made a huge difference in my life.

Over these past four years, I have learned to follow my heart in anything and everything I do. I have learned to try new things and put myself out there, even when I was afraid to do so. Most of all, I have figured out what I want to do in life. I can see beyond all of this and am excited for where I am headed. Is this year ending the way I wanted it to? Not at all, but there is no better feeling than closing one chapter, knowing I did all I could do.

Here's to the future, here's to more memories, and here's to adulthood. School may be done, but like they always said, "Once a jag, always a jag."

God Bless & Go Jags!

Zhanna, Gladney Adult Adoptee

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Topics: Adoption Stories, #wearegladney, Bright Futures Publication, Development

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