Category Archives: adoptive family support group

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Volunteers Matter: Rhonda Fisher

Crisis Pregnancy Outreach has been 100% run by volunteers since its inception more than 30 years ago. No one has ever received a salary, which enables CPO to make an even bigger difference in the lives of Tulsa area women. We know that volunteers matter, and to honor them we periodically interview and highlight one of our volunteers. This week we hear from another dedicated volunteer, Rhonda Fisher.

Q: How do you volunteer with CPO?
A: I currently spend lots of time working behind the scenes at CPO. I keep the website up-to-date, I coordinate and edit the blog, and I work with our marketing team on various projects. I mentor adoptive families as they go through the adoption process from application to finalization. I often go to volunteer fairs to recruit new volunteers or to outreach events to offer help to women in need. I also lead the monthly meeting of our Adoptive Family Support Group. My official title is the Ministry Director, and I do lots of stuff.

Q: How long have you been volunteering with us?
A: Since about June of 2012, so that would be 3.5 years.

Q: How did you find out about CPO?
A: My husband Jarad and I had been considering adoption for quite some time. We weren’t quite ready yet, and we weren’t sure if God wanted us to adopt internationally, through DHS, or through a domestic agency. We heard about CPO through a friend from the school where I was teaching. It was a beautiful ministry and right here in Tulsa. We knew we had found His plan for us.

Q: Why did you choose to volunteer with CPO vs. other organizations? What is it about crisis pregnancies that drew you to us?
A: CPO requires that adoptive families complete a specific number of hours as part of their adoption process. So that’s why I started. But I’m WAAAAAAAY past that number of hours, and my daughter’s adoption has long been finalized. But now I’m in love with this place and I can’t stop. I love the adoptive families. I love the volunteers. I love the babies. And most of all I love the women and girls that God brings to us.

Q: Why is our cause so close to your heart?
A: I love that CPO supports women through their pregnancies but also for the REST OF THEIR LIVES. You really don’t find that with many other agencies. But here at CPO, we’re not just an agency. We’re a ministry. We offer lifelong support groups and licensed counseling to these ladies, and I am so proud of that fact.

Q: What have you learned about yourself since volunteering?
A: I actually LIKE to volunteer! I mean, I really like it. I currently stay home with my daughter, Milly. While I wouldn’t change that for the world, I miss teaching and the special joy it brought to my life. But volunteering at CPO (and a few other local ministries) brings a similar joy. It is just so good to get outside of your own world and spend time helping others. It’s just plain good for my soul.

Q: How have you seen God’s hand at work in the ministry of CPO?
A: Oh my goodness. Where to begin? I have met dozens upon dozens of women helped by CPO. Many of them had no where else to turn, had never felt the love of Christ, and were merely surviving day to day before they came to CPO. Now, I see them all the time, thriving, smiling, and spreading Christ’s love to others. One of my favorite things to see around CPO is when a woman who has previously been helped by CPO decides she wants to volunteer here too. What a joy to see those who were previously helped reach out to help others, too!

Q: What would you say to anyone considering becoming involved in CPO?
A: Get with it! Don’t wait. We always need more volunteers and it’s never too soon to start being the literal hands and feet of Christ. You won’t regret it!


Retro CPO: Why

Each month we will feature a “retro” CPO article, one that is pulled from our archives of quarterly newsletters. Whenever possible we will provide details regarding the author and date of publication.

This month’s Retro CPO article was written by a volunteer who is still VERY active at CPO, Kelly Jacobson. What a wonderful lady. It was written in summer of 2007.

At the Adoptive Family Support Group recently, I shared my thoughts on why God allows those who don’t want to get pregnant to conceive, and those who are dying for a baby, not to. Why God? Why did I conceive a baby at 19, when I was nowhere ready to be a parent? I couldn’t even make good choices for myself, much less for someone else. Why God, did you later take away my ability to conceive a baby, when my heart was dying from the longing to have one? Why?

I am no theologian. I didn’t grow up in a Christian family. I only started walking with the Lord, when I was 25. I don’t even know the names of all the books of the Bible, like my seven-year-old does. But sometimes I think I get it. Sometimes I think God shows me. I believe that the answer is that God wants us to need each other. As women who can’t give birth to our children, but have a supernatural longing for them, we need our birth mothers. As women who are in an unplanned pregnancy, we need help to make tough choices in a world where the “easy” ones are very acceptable and common.

Of course, God wants us to rely on Him. And, ultimately, He can make anything happen. But God chooses to use us to help each other. Think about that. The Creator of the universe wants to use us to fulfill His will. He wants to use us to do His work. He doesn’t have to do it that way… He’s the Creator of the whole universe. He chooses to do it that way. He wants to use you, adoptive families, to help Him heal the wounds that each birth mother lives with, when she is faced with such an enormous choice as whether to give her baby life and then what kind of life. He wants to use you, birth mothers, to fill emptiness in the heart of a woman who is dying to be a mom. He allows the unplanned pregnancy… He doesn’t have to. He places the longing into the woman who can have children… He doesn’t have to. He wants to because He wants us to come together in service and sacrifice to each other. He wants us to love each other the way He loves us.

Adoption Vocabulary: Why We Don’t Celebrate “Gotcha Day”

Today’s article comes to us from Rhonda Fisher. Rhonda adopted Milly through CPO in October 2013, and has since become very involved in volunteering with us. She currently serves as the Ministry Director, which means she does lots of stuff, including editing and coordinating the blog posts you read each week.

Years ago when my husband and I first started considering adoption, we hadn’t yet determined if we would choose international, domestic, or DHS adoption. At that point, most of what I knew about adoption was from the international world. I was enamored with the idea of the “Gotcha Day” celebration. In international adoption and in DHS adoptions, this is the day when the child (often anywhere from 6 months old to teenaged) is first united with their forever family. I think it is absolutely wonderful for these families to annually celebrate the first day they laid eyes on their beloved children.

But for most families at CPO, that just isn’t the way it is. We are usually THERE at the birth, either in the delivery room or just outside in the hallway. In some instances (known as “drop ins”) we may not even know about the baby until he or she is being born, but then we rush right to the hospital and begin loving our child when they are just hours or days old.

Yesterday was the first anniversary of the day Milly’s adoption was finalized. It was fun to think back to that exciting day when Milly legally became ours: visiting the judge’s chambers, having her last name match ours, celebrating with friends and family afterwards, and perhaps best of all: saying goodbye to legal fees. (Fellow adoptive families: you get it.)

But really, that day last year was just another day. Milly had already been “ours” for almost 9 months. There wasn’t anything a gavel or stamped document changed about how much we loved her, the way we appreciated her birth mother’s choice for her, or whether Milly felt like we were truly her family.5D7A0628

In our case, I was in the delivery room and I watched Milly enter this world. Her daddy came in a few minutes later and met her when she was still getting cleaned up. Her birthday IS our Gotcha Day. In our adoption story, there are three days we will always remember: the day we met her birth mom and she asked us to raise Milly, the day Milly was born, and the day our adoption was finalized. All of those days will always remind us of special times in our story, but we really only plan to celebrate her birthday.

Of course, this is just for our specific situation. Even some CPO families have genuine “Gotcha Days” because they received their child months or even years after birth. And that brings me to my other point: adoption vocabulary.

Gotcha Day is one of many words and phrases in the adoption vocabulary. It is important to understand the meaning and implications of some of the adoption-oriented words and phrases you may use regularly. I recently came across the infographic below and thought it would be very helpful for people who want to be careful about how they speak about adoption.


This is not at all a comprehensive list, but we think it is a good start.

Lastly, I just want to thank all of the people in my life that have been willing to learn about adoption (specifically: OPEN, domestic adoption) and change their perspective about what that means in our interactions with Milly and her birth family. It can be hard to change the way you think and speak about things, but with the right motivation (redeemed birth families and adorable babies!!!), it is definitely worth it.

Volunteers Matter: Kelly Jacobson

Crisis Pregnancy Outreach has been 100% run by volunteers since its inception more than 30 years ago. No one has ever received a salary, which enables CPO to make an even bigger difference in the lives of Tulsa area women. We know that volunteers matter, and to honor them we periodically interview and highlight one of our volunteers. This week we hear from a volunteer who has been extremely dedicated to CPO for years and years: Kelly Jacobson.

Q: In what ways do you volunteer at CPO?
A: Right now I am only planning the Waiting Families Workshop but I have done just about everything at least once in the past.
Q: How long have you been volunteering with us?
A: Since 1996 with a three year break when we lived in Colorado.
Q: How did you find out about CPO?
A: Through a friend of a friend, Patti Schatzmann.
Q: Why did you choose to volunteer at CPO versus other organizations? What is it about crisis pregnancies that drew you to us?
A: When I was 19, I had an abortion. I struggled for many years to heal from it. Volunteering for a crisis pregnancy ministry helped me heal. So when we moved to Tulsa, I was on the look out for a place to volunteer.
Q: Why is our cause so close to your heart?
A: I can’t help but wonder that if I had been able to get help from a place like CPO when I was 19, I may have chosen life for my baby. I want all girls to feel like they can choose life if they want to.
Q: What have you learned about yourself since you began volunteering?
A: That God can use me in ways I never imagined! That his plans are so much better than my own.
Q: How have you seen God’s hand at work in the ministry of CPO?
A: Too many ways to count, really. In my own family, I have four adopted babies that I wouldn’t have without CPO. I have seen couples become families and birth mothers’ lives turned around. I have seen women choose life for their babies when they found out that they wouldn’t have to do it alone. I have seen God provide funds we needed in the nick of time. I have seen God provide space for us so that we didn’t have to office out of Cheryl’s car. I have seen lives saved by CPO providing women a place to live when they were truly pregnant and homeless. I could go on and on.
Q: What would you say to anyone who may be considering becoming involved with CPO?
A: Serving CPO is a privilege. Sometimes it is like God is filming a movie and He asks me if I want to be in it. It is incredible to watch it unfold before your eyes. My life has been incredibly enriched by serving here. Sometimes it is hard. Sometimes it is very sad. But it is always worth it!101_0279 (2)

Retro CPO: Cheryl Said!

Each month we will feature a “retro” CPO article, one that is pulled from our archives of quarterly newsletters. Whenever possible we will provide details regarding the author and date of publication.

This month’s Retro CPO article was written by our founder, Cheryl Bauman, in the Spring of 2005.

I always look forward to the CPO Adoptive Family Support Group meetings, which are held each month. This group is made up of families that have already adopted children through CPO, or are waiting to adopt. The room that we use at Christian Chapel is always completely full of happy adults, adorable toddlers, and precious newborn babies. The couples are always anxious for the first meeting that is held after their little one is born. This child is the answer to their prayers, and they know that no one will be more excited than other parents who have experienced the pain of infertility, and the fulfillment of their petitions to God. I really cannot, adequately, describe the love that is in that room. As we go around the room, each family speaks tenderly of their little one’s birth mom. They speak about how much they love her and what a hero she is. They talk about the time they have spent with her, the phone calls, and the letters. There are always a few families who tell of their concern over not hearing from their birth mom. They ask the others to remember her in their prayers. The outpouring of love always warms my heart, and I leave refreshed and energized. I believe that these families are examples of open adoption at its very best.

Instead of seeking to avoid a relationship with their child’s birth family, these adoptive families in CPO choose to maintain contact and develop an ongoing relationship. They see the birth family as part of their extended family. I am so grateful that adoption has changed so much in the last 20 years. Always and ever, we must remember that these little ones have two families: their birth families and their parents who raise them to be all that God created them to be. Praise God that these children will grow up knowing about their birth families and these incredibly courageous young women who not only gave them life, but a life with a wonderful family in a two-parent home. I believe that God blesses those things that are done in the light.


It has been ten years since Cheryl wrote the above note in her newsletter, but the Adoptive Family Support Group still meets. Even if you haven’t attended in years, please feel welcome to join us on the 3rd Thursday night each month. Those that are still in the infancy of their open adoptions would love to hear the wisdom that comes from those who have been doing this for 10 (or even 20) years!

He Has a Plan: Inside a CPO Open Adoption, Part Three

This is the final installment in a series of articles featuring an inside look at one of CPO’s recent adoption success stories. Be sure to read Part One and Part Two if you missed them in earlier weeks. Many thanks to Alaina Butler of Inspired Life Photos for the fine photography and conducting the interviews. Also, thanks to the Borg family and their new daughter’s birth mom, Kelly, for being willing to share their story with the world.

Alaina: Tell us a bit about open adoption, post birth.
Borg Family: Post birth adoption was very easy for us. There were several times that Kelly would come visit and get her dose of this amazing little person. We continued to make every effort to allow Kelly and her family to be involved in our lives as this is the healthiest thing for all involved. Not to mention Kelly’s extended family are incredible and adopted us as much as we adopted them.
Our adoption is far into the open side of open adoption. We completely trust Kelly and her family with Harper. They take great care of her when they see her and also include our biological son as if the adoption is both ways. This is a relationship that will allow us to walk life with them. There have also been a couple times that Kelly has been able to watch Harper without us being there which is such a blessing. I cannot explain how great it is to know that Harper has so much love on both sides.

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Alaina: How is little Harper doing? Can you tell us some of how you have all adjusted to having a new little one in the house?
Borg Family: Where to start…Harper is amazing. She has been an incredible blessing and an easy baby. There is a sense of completeness when our whole family is together. Trusting in God has a great reward and we are blessed enough to get to enjoy it every day.
The adjustment phase was pretty easy with the exception of our biological son. After having been the only child for 6 years and going through one failed adoption, Mason was pretty apprehensive. He would not touch, talk to, or allow her in his room. It is not surprising though that Harper was able to win him over as she does everyone. Mason makes it a point to run in and be one of the first people she sees. It is something that he looks forward to and we enjoy watching as she will smile back at him and fill his heart.
Since she has been able to interact and coo, she has been nothing less than what our family looks forward to every morning and every evening before bed. She lights up and smiles whenever she sees us and has a way of making us feel the love that was once given to her from the heart of her birth mom. There is this light in her eyes that can only be explained as being from a touch that only God could have done.

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Alaina: Overall, can you sum up your experience with CPO and adoption? How did it compare with your expectations?
Borg Family: I think that an organization like CPO is a rare hidden treasure and I’ve never heard of another ministry like it. It is 100% volunteer ran and the founder, nor anyone else, has ever taken a salary. To me this proves it is truly about the people. Each and every director, assistant, and volunteer has a heart for the women and children that come through the doors. CPO far exceeded any expectations we had, not that we necessarily had any specific expectations. The support that adoptive families give each other is priceless. When you are in a season of sorrow, you are still able to rejoice with a family that has just welcomed a new family member. When you are joyful, you can weep with a family that has just experienced a failed adoption or that is going through trials with birth families. The amount of support offered by CPO is truly unheard of.  Because of the information that CPO provides, we have been able to educate so many people on open adoption and the benefits it has opposed to closed adoption.

Alaina: Can you give us an example of something God did during this process?
Borg Family: I was truly able to put 100% of my trust in God with the interview process, creating life books, home studies, mounds of paperwork, meeting potential birth mothers, finances, etc. There really isn’t any other way to go through an adoption without trusting in Him. We had a few fundraisers to help with adoption expenses but never received enough to cover all of the fees we’d incur. I didn’t stress about where the money was going to come from because from the beginning God told us He would provide. When it came time to pay the agency fees, all the money we had received through fundraising had already been used to cover other adoption related expenses. We never expected that David would receive a bonus because he had only been at his new job less than one year. However, he did. It was more than enough to cover our agency fees. Another time, David was approached to do some side work for an old employer and that helped cover some of the legal bills we received.  If God says He will provide and make a way, He will. It’s as simple as that.

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That’s it for our story about Kelly and the Borg family. Please remember to keep them all in your prayers as they continue to navigate this lifelong journey. And… if  you’ve been inspired by CPO’s part in God’s amazing plan, you can help CPO by donating here. Thanks for your support!

He Has a Plan: Inside a CPO Open Adoption, Part One

This is the first in a series of articles featuring an inside look at one of CPO’s recent adoption success stories. Many thanks to Alaina Butler of Inspired Life Photos for the fine photography and conducting the interviews. Also, thanks to the Borg family and their new daughter’s birth mom, Kelly, for being willing to share their story with the world.

Alaina: There are a lot of adoption agencies, why did you choose CPO?
Borg Family: We prayed a lot about adoption and where to go. We knew that we were not led to DHS as we did not want to upset the birth order with our biological son and we are not cut out for fostering. After researching (based on what little we know about where we wanted to go with adoption) we found CPO online and noticed the reasonable fees. While it is not about money, it does catch your eye when fees are noticeably lower (thanks to the wonderful hearts that give of their lives and donate their precious time to CPO). Once we started to research CPO and what we came to understand as open adoption it started to grow on us. Open adoption was a foreign concept to us and we were not sure about it at first. With an open mind and open heart, God started to reveal to us the power of open adoption and the restoration that He performs through such things. Once we saw His hand in this, we were committed to CPO.

Alaina: What was the process of adoption like for you?
Borg Family: We started the journey around January of 2013. After God led us to CPO (and sprinkled many divine connections to CPO into our lives) we started the process of paperwork and created our Life Book (a book that portrays who our family is). There were many stressful hours and worrying if we are doing everything right but in the end God had a plan. The plan was not as straight forward as we originally wanted but then again His ways are not our ways.
CPO has a wonderful process in which the birth mom gets to choose the family that is blessed with her child. This is based on looking at Life Books and to our great relief we were finally chosen to be interviewed a few months after submitting all of our info. Before we walked into the interview at the restaurant, we prayed that God would use us in this situation even if it was not to be parents. The interview felt good and we hit it off with the birth mom…yes, it is kind of like going on an awkward blind date which has the potential to completely alter your future. After leaving we had a great feeling and just knew we were going to be chosen. I cannot explain the feeling of being picked to be trusted with caring for a life that is not a product of ourselves. It is an odd mixture of awe, gratefulness, humility, and worry. There was also this odd feeling of God telling us that we were to be a part of the birth mom’s life but not in the expected capacity. It was not long (a few weeks) before we were told that the birth mom was going to parent (due to circumstances outside of everyone’s control). This carried with it an odd feeling of renewed trust in God and devastation at the same time. There was also an amazing story of restoration through this process that we were blessed to be a part of and well…the start of another restoration process that had been formed long before we were ever conceived.
After a lot of healing and time, we received another phone call that we were going to be interviewed again. This time there was more of a reserved excitement. It is hard to fully trust when it has hurt before. When we met the birth mom and birth grandma we were met with…hugs. That is a great way to ease tension and we were instantly relieved (if only a little). As we talked with them the work God had been doing behind the scenes became instantly clear. You see…God works in ways we do not see or understand and this was no different. We found out that the birth grandma had known my (David’s) parents from a church bible study which is an amazing story of its own. I (David) had been asked in the past by my dad to pray for a girl named Kelly that was struggling through some addictions. There are no words to describe the feeling you get in your heart when you realize that God’s plan is coming to fruition right before your eyes. The birth mom and grandma actually recognized David’s parents in the Life Book and through some friends found out more about us. After the interview, we waited for the phone call saying we were picked. While we saw all of the divine connections, there was still a reservation from previous hurts. Once the phone call came saying we were chosen, it started the next phase in the amazing story that God was weaving.

Alaina: What did open adoption look like while Kelly was expecting?
Borg Family: In the beginning Kelly & I (Sheri) would meet for every doctors appointment. Kelly was only 8 weeks pregnant when she chose our family. There were some awkward feelings and moments that required faith to just allow the process to unfold. We would get to know more about each other’s family, friends, and beliefs. As always, God orchestrates some amazing divine connections. We would sometimes meet for dinner or go shopping. The further along Kelly’s pregnancy went, the more we tried to spend time together. We would meet for lunch and have pedicures, or she would just come over and hang out on the couch. The bond that was forming is hard to describe but it was solid. We were able to meet Kelly’s family and she ours. Kelly and her oldest son would come over to our home for dinner and her son would play with our 6 year old. It was really amazing to see how God was connecting two families.2014.05.12-142014.05.12-3

Alaina: Do you have any advice you would like to pass on to an adopting family starting the process of open adoption?
Borg Family: This is a process that is God’s timing for sure. It is very easy to get wrapped up in worry and wonder (all of which are playgrounds of the enemy). There will be times that feel great and other times that make a person wonder if they are missing something or did something wrong. It will be filled with second guesses and questions. You must trust in God’s plan and allow it all to unfold.


Be sure to check back often to see what happened next in the incredible journey with Kelly and the Borgs!


A Fantastic Opportunity

We are learning at CPO that every adopted child has experienced some form of trauma, even if you took them straight home from the hospital. If the birth mother was using drugs or being abused during pregnancy, the unborn baby will obviously be affected. But new brain research shows that even if the birth mother was just stressed out during the pregnancy (which would be just about any crisis pregnancy), the child will have some trauma to overcome.

That’s where Dr. Sorrels comes in! She is an expert in the field of child development, and she says the best way to overcome trauma is attachment and bonding! The DVDs CPO recently purchased (titled: Impact of Trauma on Healthy Child Development) have 6 topics on this exact subject. Topics include: characteristics of traumatized children, challenges traumatized children face, prenatal trauma, attachment, self-regulation, and much more.  We think they are extremely important subjects and very helpful information.


Beginning next week, we’ll be having a 6-week showing and discussion of these videos. The sessions will be on Monday nights and will run from about 7-9pm. We’ll watch one topic (about an hour) and then afterwards we can discuss our thoughts and questions. Childcare will also be available. Please email with your child’s name and age to reserve a spot.

Please save the dates below on your calendar and plan to attend. Tell your friends, too! Anyone is welcome to come. You won’t be disappointed!

Monday, September 22
Monday, September 29
Monday, October 6
(No session on October 13 as Older Adoption Support Group meets that night)
Monday, October 20
Monday, October 27
Monday, November 3


Volunteers Matter: Amie Vetscher

Crisis Pregnancy Outreach has been 100% run by volunteers since its inception more than 30 years ago. No one has ever received a salary, which enables CPO to make an even bigger difference in the lives of Tulsa area women. We know that volunteers matter, and to honor them we will periodically interview and highlight one of our volunteers.
This week we learn about Amie Vetscher, a name you may recognize as a frequent author on this blog.
Q: In what ways do you volunteer at CPO?
A: I volunteered at the CPO office during the week, assisted with the Gala this year, and presented a workshop to birth moms and parenting moms about creating pathways to a college education. Although my husband and I recently moved out-of-state, I regularly write for the CPO blog remotely in order to continue my CPO volunteerism.
Q: How did you find out about CPO?
A: After coming to terms with two years of unsuccessful and disappointing fertility treatments, my husband and I decided to pursue adoption. We gathered information about adoption agencies across the country and talked to friends who adopted. That was when a close Tulsa friend shared information about CPO, a local ministry. Our friend’s neighbor adopted successfully through CPO, took the time to meet with us, and graciously told us all about the CPO ministry.
Q: Why did you choose to volunteer at CPO versus other organizations? What is it about crisis pregnancies that drew you to us?
A: The fact that CPO is an entirely volunteer-based ministry distinguishes it from many other charitable organizations. Inherently, by ministering to a woman in a crisis pregnancy, God’s hand touches, at its start, two lives. If the expectant mother chooses to place the child for adoption, then at once the fruit of that service blesses another set of lives. Through a crisis pregnancy ministry, God protects the unborn, strengthens a woman in need, creates a mother and a father out of a childless couple, or a big brother/sister from a child waiting for a sibling.
Q: Why is the CPO cause so close to your heart?
A: For my husband and I, our future family will be brought to us through this cause. Because CPO will be there for the woman in need, our home will someday be filled with soft giggles and the pitter-patter of little feet.
Q: What have you learned about yourself since you began volunteering?
A: The pain of infertility is a very isolating experience. Before I became involved with CPO as a volunteer, I had a difficult time seeing past my own medical issues and treatments to achieve a pregnancy. Going to church, shopping centers, social gatherings and even our own family gatherings created triggers of anguish; round bellies and strollers flourished everywhere, except with me. Volunteering at CPO helped me realize that my gifts and talents are needed and valued, at a time that I very much struggled with my own self-worth. It also helped me grow in understanding the issues and needs of women facing a crisis pregnancy. I will need this understanding so I am prepared to minister to the birth mom who chooses us, respond appropriately to her needs, and build a positive relationship with her that our child will enjoy for the rest of his/her life.
Q: How have you seen God’s hand at work in the ministry of CPO?
A: The many stories that families have shared during the adoptive family support group or volunteer work have been a beacon of light and hope for me. I see God’s hand in every family that CPO brought together.
Q: What would you say to anyone who may be considering becoming involved with CPO?
A: CPO is set apart from many charitable organizations not only because of what it accomplishes through volunteers, but how effective, organized and creditable it is in carrying out its ministry goals. At the top of the list of accomplishments, I would recognize the fact that CPO is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week without paid staff. CPO is a ministry with integrity and a sizable network of reputable health care providers, leaders and volunteers who are dedicated to changing lives and are willingly committed to the long, difficult hours necessary to do so. I am so proud to be a part of CPO.
Vetscher Family
Thanks again to Amie Vetscher for being a dedicated CPO volunteer!


Not Just “Waiting” Families: CPO’s WFW Informs and Inspires Future Adoptive Parents

Written by Amie Vetscher, this is the first in a series of articles about CPO’s recent Waiting Families Workshop. Click here for the second installment, here for the third installment, and here for the fourth installment.

Last month, CPO conducted its 24th workshop for waiting families. Ten families participated in the three-day workshop that covered the ins and outs of open adoption through Crisis Pregnancy Outreach’s ministry to pregnant women and new mothers in need. Thanks to CPO’s amazing volunteers who organized speakers, developed eighteen informative segments, and coordinated donated meals. Waiting Family Workshop participants heard from CPO Executive Director, Cheryl Bauman; Jane Waters, LMFT and author of Arms Wide Open: An Insight to Open Adoption; adoption attorney, Stacy Acord; Gwen Elliot, CPA; Dr. Barbara Sorrels from the Institute of Childhood Education; and Dr. James Ross of Saint Francis Hospital South.

Through a series of powerful segments covered by CPO birthmoms, adoptive families and growing or grown adopted children; waiting families gained insight and sensitivity into the miracles, joy, pain, and healing that only God could orchestrate within the adoption triad and beyond. Those familiar with open adoption recognize the “adoption triad” as the dynamic relationship between the birthmother, adoptive family, and adopted child. The presenters and their stories redefined “the triad” to include significant, life-altering bonds that can also be formed among birth grandparents, adoptive grandparents and great-grandparents, other biological children or adopted children, as well as the offspring of adopted children. “These speakers were courageous and transparent in their testimonies,” one participant commented. “I felt my heart open more with each perspective. I feel it has prepared me to love our future birthmom more generously and be a more compassionate person. In due course,” she added, “I’ll be a better parent because of this workshop.”

Attendance at the Waiting Family Workshop, offered twice a year, is a requirement for adoptive families within a year of their CPO adoption. But to most families, it meant more than just fulfilling a requirement. “I can’t imagine going through with the adoption before attending this workshop,” a participant remarked. “I’m much better prepared than before.”

Return each week to the CPO blog, as our writers will share various segments covered during the Waiting Family Workshop with our readers. Stay tuned to read, “Liquid Gold: Nursing and Nourishing the Adopted Baby through Breast Milk,” and “Three Good Reasons: A Birth Mom’s Story of Healing,” and “CPO’s Doulas: An Amazing Gift.”