Korea Celebrates 6th Adoption Day to Promote Domestic Adoption
The Korean government designated May 11th
Adoption Day in 2006 to boost adoption rates within the country.
And this year, some 1-thousand government officials, social workers and adoptive parents participated in a special event in Seoul.
[Interview : Lee Hwa-sup, Adoptive parent] "People worry that they might not be happy because adopted children are not related to them. But look, we're a very happy, loving family. When a beautiful child joins your family, it brings so much joy."
The government started a new service on Wednesday, connecting adoption agencies and parents seeking to adopt a child, which will provide more information for both sides.
And, although it is important to raise awareness about adoption, some say it is equally important to help change society's perception of single mothers.
"May 11th was also chosen as Single Mom's Day, to raise public awareness about the connection between adoption and single mothers and the discrimination the women face."
Several Korean organizations, including TRACK and KoRoot, came together to organize the first international conference on single mothers and a special party where adoptees and women who gave up their children spoke up.
Supporters say there is a prejudice against single mothers in Korea and this is driving up the number of children being given up for adoption.
[Interview : Kim Do-hyun, Director
KoRoot] "More than 2-thousand-4-hundred Korean children were adopted domestically and internationally last year, with 90 percent of them from single mothers. We want to support women who decide to raise their babies alone and our society must work together to make things easier for these mothers."
Experts demand that the government revise its adoption law so that mothers have at least 30 days to decide before giving up their child.
They also argue that the mothers need more support and that stricter measures are crucial when assessing potential adoptive parents.
(Oh Jee-hyun : Arirang News.)
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