Making a Family Love Connection through the Internet

By Maria Gallagher, Legislative Director

I happened to be reading through a magazine when an interesting tidbit caught my eye. It was a blurb about a website dedicated to “using the Internet to build families.”

Curious, I decided to type into Picture1my Internet browser. The homepage featured a TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) talk by Hank Fortener, the founder of the website. He starts by going “old school,” talking about how a couple adopted his grandfather in 1929 from an orphanage. His grandfather and grandmother had a son, Chuck, who with his wife Anne had three biological children. Then Chuck and Anne ended up providing foster care to 36 children in their home. They went on to adopt a number of other children from many different countries, creating a stunning family portrait which appears in the video.

Determined to help other children find families despite tremendous obstacles, Hank founded a non-profit crowdfunding platform to help lower the financial hurdles that prospective adoptive couples face. Fortener notes that adopting a child today can cost as much as a luxury car. That’s where his organization comes in. Couples complete an online profile, submit a homestudy and the parent organization of Adopt Together then awards grants for adoption to prospective adopting families.

The marriage of entrepreneurial spirit and the Internet to create a family love connection is truly inspiring. Let’s hope that others can create equally innovative ways to promote adoption, which is the truly loving option for children who, in today’s society, could otherwise face extinction through abortion.

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