A Summary of the day
At last, the eagerly awaited day of the book launch had arrived and, as one of the lucky ones able to attend, I felt excited travelling in to London. Not only was this a chance to pick up one of the first copies, “Hot off the Press” but also another opportunity to mingle and chat to fellow adoptees!
Julia Feast (as the British Chinese Adoption Study Project Manager) gave a brief introduction. Presentations by Margaret Grant, Alan Rushton and John Simmonds covered issues such as early orphanage life, health and well-being, relationships, (both with the adoptive family and partners) exposure to racist attitudes or behaviour, as well as opinions on transracial/transnational adoption.
Much thought had been given to the planning of the study: Standardised measures had to be used so that key comparisons could be made with other studies, especially the 1958 National Child Development Study.
However, the team was also keen to strike a balance between a scientific study without losing the personal and human elements, resulting from information given in the questionnaires and face to face interviews.
Four adoptees gave very different but equally moving, personal accounts about their backgrounds and experiences of adoption. I can’t say any more since I believe they have been asked to speak again at the Reunion in March!
Julia then presided over a short “Question and Answer” session. It was hoped by many that, after so much dedicated, hard work by the project team, the results of this research may help the government to shape future adoption policy in this country.
Finally, I’d like to place on record special thanks to the Nuffield Foundation for funding this project and to all who were involved with it.