Search & reunion services in Ireland
The adoption of Irish children has decreased from a yearly high of almost 1,500 in 1975 to less than 100 in 2002. However, the number of adoptions of children from abroad continues to grow. We have aided some very distressed Irish mothers whose children were exported to the USA for adoption up until the early 1970s, so we are concerned that women in Eastern Europe, Asia, Central and South America should not be forced by poverty or social exclusion into parting from their children.
Search and Reunion
The private (mostly religious-run) adoption agencies once registered to contract legal adoptions under the supervision of The Adoption Board, are now funded by the State to also provide Search and Reunion services for both adopted people and their natural parents. We contend that it is unacceptably hurtful to require women to return to that very Agency which often strongly pressurised them to agree to the adoption of their child, in order to reunite with them. (We know of many women who are unable to walk on the street where an Agency is located without becoming physically ill from the traumatic memories which come flooding back). A number of these adoption agencies have voluntarily closed over the years, and the files and Search and Reunion services have been transferred either to their local Health Board or to The Adoption Board. Check the List of Irish Adoption Agencies and Health Boards on this website for details about Search and Reunion services.