Adoption

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State officials say New Hampshire faces a critical shortage of foster families for a growing number of children.

About 1,000 kids will enter the public system this year, yet there are only 600 licensed foster homes, and many of those are not prepared to take in a child at this time.

Michelle Galligan with Child and Family Services in Manchester says the state is particularly struggling to find homes for sibling groups, sometimes with up to four children at a time. And the problem has gotten worse in recent years.

L: Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum|Public domain

This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Fall of Saigon, and “Operation Babylift” which evacuated thousands of supposedly orphaned South Vietnamese children who were then relocated to homes in American and beyond. On today’s show we’ll revisit the controversial program and get a firsthand account from one of the airlifted children.

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More children these days are living with Grandma and Grandpa, due to factors including incarceration, drug abuse, underemployment, and single parenthood.  We’ll find out how these grandparents become primary caregivers of their grandchildren, and the challenges they face, including housing, health, financial and legal issues.

GUESTS:

Anthony Kelly via flickr Creative Commons

Adopting a child is for many people the culmination of a dream. But it takes work, and money – international adoptions can run from $15,000 to $40,000, and involve years of vetting and paperwork. Still, things don’t always work out.  A network of internet groups has become an underground market for advertising and discarding unwanted children – most of them adopted from abroad.  The process is called “private re-homing,” and it involves little or no government oversight. It’s the topic of an 18-month investigation by Reuters. Megan Twohey is investigative reporter at Thomson Reuters, and among those who worked on the 5-part series and multimedia presentation called, “The Child Exchange.”

Concord Monitor Reporter Clay Wirestone has been writing about his experience as a gay parent. He’s authored a series of articles about the process he and his husband have gone through in adopting their 2 year old son. The series has also looked at the history of gay adoption in the Granite State. Clay joins us to talk about the series.