Like all of you, we here at NCFA find ourselves navigating truly unchartered territory as the Coronavirus pandemic creates global uncertainty and societal upheaval. As we come to the end of this first full week of social distancing, border closings, curfews, and travel restrictions, our hearts are heavy, but our hope is strong.
We’re thinking of the children who will wait even longer for a family, and the heartbreak for those who will now age out because a family in process couldn’t get to them in time. We’re grieving with the hopeful adoptive families whose process has been significantly delayed or their travel put on hold indefinitely. And we’re coming alongside our community of professionals who are working hard to care well for their clients and continue to advocate for children, while managing an increasingly complex situation that seems to change daily and even hourly.
We are also inspired by the spirit of collaboration, courage, and dedication that we are seeing in this community. Their commitment to meeting the need of children around the world for permanent, loving families has not waivered even as the world changes at a rapid pace. And at a time when our society is experiencing stress and pressures at every level, we know that the services provided to children and families by social workers, adoption professionals, and resource organizations are needed more than ever. As we support one another through these challenging days, we are reminded again of just how much community counts.
NCFA is committed to providing our members with the supports, resources, and information needed to help them get through this difficult time. We are holding weekly member conference calls, sharing daily updates through our listservs, and fielding an increasing number of requests for individual constituent services. We are working to ease the burden of individual members, by advocating with state and federal government officials for clearer information and consistent guidance on adoption policies and issues impacted by the Coronavirus. And finally, we are monitoring the landscape for opportunities to provide business and financial resources for our members whose work is directly impacted the Coronavirus. Many of our members are nonprofits and/or small businesses, and they need every available option to ensure they can continue to provide consistent, high quality services to children and families.
We have received a number of questions about upcoming NCFA events, including the 40th Anniversary Families For All Gala and the National Adoption Conference. Committees for both events, including staff and board members, have been diligently assessing the situation and all possible contingency plans for each event. We expect to be able to share an announcement about the Gala early next week. Late today, we shared the difficult news that as a result of the Conference venue, Hotel at UMD closing due to Covid-19, we have been forced to make the decision to cancel the National Adoption Conference as scheduled for June 23 - 25, 2020.
As we go into the weekend, we urge this community to be intentional in caring well for yourselves. It has been an intense week, and for many professionals who have been navigating this since the early days when the virus began impacting adoptions from China, it has now been an intense few months. We’re so grateful for your work. What you do matters and makes a vital impact for so many. Take the time to refuel, rest, and renew your spirit. Together, will get through this one day at a time. The children we are committed to serving need us now more than ever.