A safe place for your patients
to explore pregnancy options.
A woman from Planned Parenthood shared about OA&FS. I never thought of another agency. I feel so thankful for the work and care that went into my placement. Thank you!
Service provider resources for professionals working with expectant parents.
You care deeply about the needs of the mothers and babies you serve. At Open Adoption & Family Services, we do too. If you’re a professional working with expectant parents who are facing unintended pregnancies or would like to explore adoption, we’d like to extend our service provider resources to you. In this section you’ll learn about programs, trainings and presentations that we offer. You can also order free materials for your clients and patients.
OA&FS is a pro-choice, non-profit open adoption agency that has promoted diversity and inclusion since 1985. We’re licensed in Oregon and Washington, and we have extended our services nationwide. We offer all-options pregnancy counseling and open adoption planning. We look forward to hearing from you and sharing information about our innovative model of choice, empowerment and relationship building.
Open adoption as an
alternative to state adoption: Sharene’s story.
“It was a really good experience for me. I built a relationship with my counselor and found wonderful parents for my son.”
Sharene is the birthmother of Finn, Sophia and Joan. Finn was adopted through Open Adoption & Family Services by Brady and Peter. This video reflects Sharene’s thoughts at that time.
“After adopting my son, they also [welcomed my daughters] Joan and Sophia. It really shows what it means to be the world’s greatest fathers.”
Brady and Peter later adopted Finn’s two sisters from the Oregon state foster care system. Now that her children are older, Sharene, along with their Dads, have a more evolved open adoption story to tell.
Angela’s open adoption story.
When an infant is removed from her mother’s care and placed into foster care, it’s a difficult and stressful experience for everyone involved.
Many pregnant and parenting moms who are struggling with issues related to addiction, domestic violence, homelessness or mental illness, are also at high risk of losing custody of their child to the state.
Birthparents who have had their parental rights terminated involuntarily by the state, tell us it was one of the most traumatic events of their lives. Consequently, Open Adoption & Family Services has developed a collaborative relationship with Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) to create an alternative track for parents who are at risk of losing their parental rights.
In 2010, DHS released a memorandum clarifying a state policy, that now supports women who wish to work with a private agency, such as ours, instead of facing involuntary termination of their parental rights. When parenting is no longer an option for women who have children up to the age of three and one-half years, they can now choose to proactively plan an open adoption with our agency. This exciting advancement gives women in need a viable alternative to state involvement.
OA&FS can bring its open adoption model to parents who have previously had very few adoption options and provide an alternative track before their parental rights are terminated in court. If you would like copies of the brochure we’ve created about this option for parents at risk of losing their parental rights, please contact us. Read brochure.
By accessing open adoption services at OA&FS, at risk parents can ensure their child is quickly placed in a safe and permanent home. Our agency’s adoption services are rooted in choice, empowerment and relationship building. At OA&FS, women are empowered to choose adoptive parents, form a close relationship with them and to create a legally enforceable contract for ongoing visits. It may be vital to their future to know about and to be able to access, this viable alternative for at-risk moms.
This alternate adoption track also gives the birthparents the opportunity to set their child on a new path in life and potentially create a new direction for their own life. We welcome the opportunity to share more about this viable option with service provider staffs. Feel free to contact us to set up a free presentation.
“Planning an open adoption was an opportunity for me to get my life back on track and still be part of my children’s life. I knew I could make my life better with support, and my open adoption has given me a whole new family. I just graduated from a recovery program and have a part- time job. I couldn’t have done that with court involvement, or threats and pressure from an authority figure.”Angela, OA&FS Birthmother
What community professionals say about open adoption as a pre-emptive step to state adoption.
“What a beautiful program. This addresses the child’s need to know that their birthparents are okay by having an ongoing relationship with them. That will relieve a huge burden for these kids.”DHS Caseworker
“The termination hearing for the birthmom is humiliating and should be avoided at all cost. This is an excellent alternative.”DHS Supervisor
“I have worked with moms who created open adoption plans with OA&FS prior to DHS involvement. This has been very rewarding for both the mom and the child, who doesn’t have to enter the foster care system.”Medical Social Worker
“I met with a mother who wanted ongoing contact with her child and to plan an adoption outside of her family. As DHS is legally required to search for relative placements, she chose a family through OA&FS. They responded quickly and sensitively to her needs.”Child Protective Services Worker
Last minute adoption plans.
When your patient wants to create her own unique adoption plan, our “last-minute” open adoption services empower and support her.
At Open Adoption & Family Services, we recognize the challenges you face daily as you meet the unique and complex needs of each patient. If she wants to explore her adoption options, we can help. Here’s how we can extend our services to you:
Quick Response: Available 24/7
- Counselors are available to respond to your needs immediately.
All Options Counseling
- The counselor can help your patient explore her options, explain her legal rights regarding adoption, assess the birthfather’s legal status and support her in whatever decision she ultimately makes.
- She can select from 65-85 diverse families who are prepared to adopt. We provide a detailed profile on all of the families for her review. Our families are seeking a genuine friendship with her.
Creating a Relationship
- The family she chooses can meet her within a few hours. With our relationship guidance, they begin building a strong and healthy foundation to their open adoption relationship. Together they create a legally enforceable contract for ongoing visits.
Entrustment & Placement
- In most cases we are able to place the child with the adoptive family before she and the baby are discharged, if that’s what she wishes. The adoption reflects her adoption vision.
- She is entitled to ongoing counseling and relationship support. We have a lifetime commitment to our child-centered adoptions.
Our Services for Hospital Staff
We offer free presentations on adoption tailored to fit the needs of your staff.
We can also assist your staff in creating an ethically sound adoption policy reflecting your dedication to providing your patients with professional adoption resources.
Access tools and resources to empower expectant parents with our free webinar.
Expectant parents deserve access to unbiased, accurate information about all of their pregnancy options: parenting, abortion and adoption. Learn about an engaging, client-driven all-options pregnancy counseling model in which you can assist women facing an unplanned pregnancy with their decision-making process.
You’ll also become familiar with our new alternative to state adoption. Many high risk moms assume that adoption is an adversarial process of losing their child to the state. Learn about our new pre-emptive step to state adoption in which these moms can proactively plan an open adoption for their child.
View webinar video.
Watch “Empowering Expectant Parents” as prepared by Shari Levine, OA&FS Executive Director. Want to learn more? These additional resources can help.
- Guttmacher Institute statistics on unintended pregnancy.
- Abortion pill/medication pill details.
- Surgical/in-clinic abortion process.
- Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette.
- Lovejoy SurgiCenter.
- Downtown Women’s Center.
- OHSU Center for Women’s Health.
- Backline Abortion Resources.
- Open Adoption & Family Services options counseling.
- Backline Toll-Free Talkline.
- Pregnancy options workbook.
- 211 Info.
- OA&FS process description: how you choose adoptive parents.
- OA&FS’ large diverse pool of families.
- OA&FS adoption planning process.
- OA&FS placement and entrustment video.
- OA&FS alternative to state adoption process, videos.
- Open adoption experiences: Sharene’s Story video.
- Open adoptee Brianna on open adoption video.
- Open adoptee videos.
- Oregon Health Authority training resources.
View and download slides.
Present at your convenience with these slides and the printable versions of all the support documents listed below (in order of appearance).
- Outline for Options Counseling
- Tools for Your Agency
- Pregnancy Options Questions to Consider
- Planned Parenthood Abortion Types Frequently Asked Questions
- Difficult Questions/Statements
- Options Counseling Resources
- Myths and Facts about Open Adoption
- Placement and Entrustment Ceremony VIDEO
- 15 Reasons to Choose OA&FS
- Important Questions to Ask When Comparing Adoption Services
- Pregnancy Options and Open Adoption Resources for Service Providers
Benefits of Open Adoption
Ongoing contact enables birthparents to see for themselves that their child is thriving in the adoptive family’s home. This helps them feel at peace with their open adoption decision. Our video “Open Adoption Over the Years” shows how families have built long-term relationships.
Knowing that the birthparents fully support the adoption, adoptive parents feel secure in welcoming the birthparents into their lives. And, most importantly, the open relationship gives the child direct access to information about their history and support from their birthparents. This allows for the healthy development of the child’s sense of identity and self-esteem.
Free trainings and presentations.
Let us help you support your clients.
We recognize that counseling pregnant women/couples who are facing an unplanned pregnancy can present a unique challenge. We would like to offer the support you need to make this process easier. OA&FS offers free, interactive trainings for groups of any size, at any location in Oregon or Washington.
Our presentation can be as long or a short as your schedule allows, from ten minutes to half a day, depending on your needs and circumstances. Our longer trainings are highly interactive and include small and large group discussions, values clarification and role play scenarios. Participants leave with action steps of how to incorporate the new information into their work.
We welcome the opportunity to collaborate with you and your coworkers!
Get up-to-date information with these training topics.
OA&FS is the regional expert at providing professionals with all-options pregnancy counseling and open adoption trainings. Our agency completes more infant placements per year than any other adoption agency in the Northwest, and we specifically specialize in open adoptions. Our trainings provide up-to-date and thorough information about Oregon and Washington adoption practices.
These sessions prepare professionals to skillfully incorporate adoption into their all-options counseling programs, and allow them to provide accurate information to their clients. Through our collaboration with Healthy Start, Planned Parenthood of the Columbia-Willamette, Planned Parenthood of Greater Washington and North Idaho and Backline, we are in a unique position to sensitively address these topics. In 2009, 2010 and 2012 we partnered with Backline, Planned Parenthood and the Center for Health Training to offer the Pregnancy Options Dialogue, a workshop for professionals in offering all-options pregnancy counseling.
Each OA&FS presentation will cover as many of the following topics as you choose, according to your needs and interests:
Open adoption as an alternative to state adoption.
All-options pregnancy counseling
What’s new in the way adoption is practiced today?
How does open adoption work?
How to talk to teens about adoption.
Open adoption relationships: Hear from a panel of people who are living open adoptions.
Placing older children in open adoptions, (up to 3 1/2 years).
The hospital experience in an open adoption.
Attorney vs. agency adoptions.
Our service provider Bill of Rights.
When referring a pregnant woman to us, you can be assured she will …
If she chooses adoption, she will…
The National Pro-Choice Adoption Collaborative is your pregnancy options counseling and open adoption resource.
Open Adoption & Family Services and Friends in Adoption have teamed up to form the National Pro-Choice Adoption Collaborative (NPAC), a union of two high-integrity agencies with a shared philosophy. We’re pro-choice, not religiously affiliated, embrace diversity and offer lifelong services. With our empowerment model, we’ve become the national experts in open adoption. Each of our non-profit agencies has 30+ years of experience, and we place children up to the age of three in open adoptions. We have offices on the east and west coasts, and work with expectant parents nationwide. We’re here to help you meet the needs of the moms you serve. Add NPAC to your resource list!
Partnering with professionals
in community support.
OA&FS has a long history of partnering with clinics, hospitals, schools and other organizations that support pregnant women and couples. We work with organizations throughout Oregon and Washington.
Thanks to our colleagues for these endorsements:
Thank you for the presentation. It was great! We all came away with a lot of great information for ourselves, and to share with all of our patients. We will be in contact with you in the future for more materials. – Katie Jo, Health Center Manager, Planned Parenthood of the Columbia-Willamette.
We so appreciate the fact that OA&FS is willing to come each year to Birthingway College of Midwifery to share information and connection with our students. OA&FS’ mission and philosophy dovetail beautifully with the way we encourage our students to engage in their own care, emphasizing true shared decision-making. Our students value the relational, whole-person, centered approach OA&FS espouses, and they are grateful to have open adoption as a resource for clients. – Nichole Reding, MA, CPM, LDM, Academic Coordinator and Instructor, Birthingway College.
OA&FS counselor Katie has been providing training support for a group of my staff that are learning options counseling. Katie has been incredible in providing support and training. She is obviously knowledgeable and incredibly skilled, as well as professional and passionate. – Multnomah County Maternal Child Health Director.
You and your staff do such a unique and life-affirming job. You really are changing the face and feel of adoption in Oregon! – Elizabeth, Program Development Specialist, Healthy Start of Multnomah County, OR
Every so often, a patient comes into the hospital to deliver, intending to release her infant for adoption but without having a plan in place. At such a critical time, it is important for the hospital social worker to let the patient know there are adoption resources that can provide her with complete information about her options so that she can make an informed decision about whether or not she wants to proceed with an adoption release. Open Adoption and Family Services is such an agency and one that I have come to respect and hold in high regard. I have found Open Adoption and Family Services willing to respond immediately and without hesitation to situations involving unplanned adoptions. Further, I know that they will maintain the ethic of patient self-determination and work to facilitate whatever the patient considers to be in the best interest of herself and her newborn. Professionally, Open Adoption and Family Services has made my life a lot simpler, and the life of many birthmothers who enter the hospital devoid of a plan, a lot more satisfying. – Rich, Clinical Social Worker
I wanted thank you regarding the recent presentation by your counselor, Katie. She was AMAZING! Great information, very personable, clear and concise in answering questions, very competent and clearly able to articulate issues of social justice and sensitivity to client centered practice with the agency. Also wanted to say how impressed I am with the OA&FS program in general and the values that are very clear in its processes. – Mr. B. Bartja, LICSW, MHP, CMHS PSNHC, Social Worker, Rainier Beach Medical Clinic
Whether working with patients or healthcare professionals, I always recommend Open Adoption & Family Services. I am consistently impressed by their commitment to the families they work with and to the community at large. They provide a wealth of information, nonjudgmental counseling, and emotional and logistical support — and are always happy to refer clients who may need outside services. Most importantly, Open Adoption & Family Services truly provides women with CHOICES.” – Grayson, Education Program Coordinator, formerly with Planned Parenthood, Portland
When working with OA&FS, it is a great relief to know our patients will receive consistent emotional support before and after the adoption. My experience has been that both birth and adoptive parents working with OA&FS feel better-prepared and well-supported when making an adoption plan. – Karen, Medical Social Worker, PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center, Eugene, OR
I feel very confident working with OA&FS, because I can depend on an immediate response. I know the OA&FS counselor will be an advocate for my patient and support her in any decision she makes. I am also confident that the counselor is very informed about the legal issues around adoption. – Kay, Maternity Care Coordinator, McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center, Springfield, OR
Even as a labor and delivery nurse and educator, I quickly realized that I had many incorrect perceptions about open adoption. In the 9 years that I have worked with primarily closed adoptions in the hospital, I had observed the situation to be stressful and sometimes negative for the persons involved. Shari put myself and my students at ease about the common misnomers that often surround the subject. She was able to share some wonderful stories with the group. We were able to understand the beauty of open adoption and were amazed by the bond that is formed between the birthparents and the adoptive parents. It was wonderful to see how so many children can live normal, healthy, happy lives in the care of all different types of families. I am thankful that I was educated about this caring option. – Erica, RNC, Providence St. Vincent Hospital, Portland, OR
I have been impressed with the quality of service OA&FS provides to the birthmothers who deliver here. The adoption counselors are always respectful, well-informed and competent professionals. Their involvement helps us provide quality medical care, while insuring the ethical issues related to adoption are upheld. – Donna, Lead Social Worker, PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center, Vancouver, WA
Shari, thank you so much for taking the time to come out to SARC and share Open Adoption’s mission with us. This is such a great/thought-provoking topic for our volunteers. There was a lot of great discussion after you left! We really appreciate your philosophy about empowering individuals to make decisions that are best for them. I will definitely be in touch in the future, in order to set up another info. sharing experience for our volunteers. Keep up the great work! Thanks again! – Esther, Volunteer Manager, SARC (Sexual Assault Resource Center)
I am so very grateful to have your continued participation in the Nursing of Families course at U.P. The students are surprised and informed by your information and presentation and you never fail to engage and stimulate them into questioning and participation. – Kathleen, University of Portland Nursing Program
Thank you very much for coming and talking with us. The information and discussion was truly at the right level for this group. And our discussion continued after you left – it was a valuable afternoon (from the faculty perspective for sure!). I look forward to connecting with you again! – J. Dale, University of Portland
Thanks for sending copies of your latest brochures. I am so glad your organization exists, and my staff has been very pleased with the services you provide when they have been able to have clients to meet with one of your counselors. You are doing such important work!! And I’m so glad you pointed out the option for working proactively with families whose parental rights are in jeopardy. We hadn’t really thought about that possibility. – Jennifer, Skagit Co. Public Health
Appreciate all you do, and your efforts to assure we have current and accurate materials. – Diana, Program Coordinator, Commission on Children & Families/Healthy Start
We appreciate our community partners.
- Adventist Medical Center, (Vancouver, WA)
- Legacy Meridian Park Medical CenterLegacy Good Samaritan
- Randall’s Children’s Hospital
- Oregon Health & Sciences University, (OHSU)
- OHSU Center for Women’s Health
- Peacehealth Southwest Medical Center
- Providence Portland Medical Center
- Providence St. Vincent Medical Center
- Silverton Hospital
- Calyx Doulas
- Center for Family Success
- Children’s Program
- Downtown Women’s Center
- Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO)
- Insights Teen Parent Program
- Kinship House
- Lifeworks Northwest
- NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon
- The Next Door: New Parent Services
- Oregon Post-Adoption Resource Center
- Outside In
- Planned Parenthood of the Columbia-Willamette
- Providence Beginnings
- Salvation Army
- SE Works
- The Sexual & Gender Minority Youth Resource Center, (SMYRC)
- Youth Rights and Justice
- Birthingway Midwifery College
- Linfield College
- University of Portland Nursing Program
- Clackamas Community College
- Lewis & Clark College
- Mt. Hood Community College
- Portland Community College
- Marylhurst University
- National College of Naturopathic Medicine
- Reed College Student Health Services
- Portland State University
- University of Portland Health Center
- Capital Medical Center
- Evergreen Hospital Medical Center
- Group Health Seattle Medical Center
- Harborview Medical Center
- Harrison Medical Center
- Highline Medical Center
- MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital
- Northwest Hospital
- Providence Centralia Hospital
- Providence Everett Medical Center
- Providence St. Peter Hospital
- St. Elizabeth Hospital
- St. Francis Hospital
- St. Joseph Medical Center
- Swedish Medical Center
- Tacoma General Hospital
- University of Washington Medical Center
- Valley Medical Centerl
- Bellevue College Counseling Office
- Columbia Basin College
- North Seattle College
- Seattle Pacific University
- Shoreline Community College
- University of Washington Hall Health Center
- Central Washington University Health Center
- Washington State University Health & Wellness Center
- Wenatchee Valley College
- Western Washington University
Oregon and Washington Statewide
- NARAL Oregon
- NARAL Washington
- Oregon Child Protective Services
- Oregon County Health Departments
- Oregon Department of Human Services
- Oregon Health Authority
- Oregon MothersCare
- Washington DSHS Children’s Administration
- Washington Department of Social and Health Services, (DSHS)
- Washington State Department of Health
Free materials and resources for you.
OA&FS offers the following free DVDs, brochures and fliers for service providers and their clients. To order these materials, contact us at 1-800-772-1115, email firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out this online order form. If you would like to include excerpts from OA&FS materials or republish this content, please contact us for permission.
Cards, brochures and fliers.
Pregnant? You Have Choices. Business card-sized accordion brochure with an overview of OA&FS services including pregnancy options counseling, open adoption and open adoption as an alternative to state adoption. Includes information in Spanish and QR codes for direct website access.
The Decision Is Yours. Brochure card outlines OA&FS’ free, all-options pregnancy counseling including parenting, abortion, adoption.
You Have Choices. Flier with pregnancy options counseling overview and questions to ask about the different options.
Creating Lifelong Connections. Brochure explains OA&FS’ unique open adoption program in which birthparents choose the family, enjoy ongoing visits and receive lifelong services.
Every Voice is Heard. Flier with testimonials from birthparents and other adoption constellation members about their open adoptions.
Explora tus opciones de embarazo. Brochure about our unique all-options pregnancy counseling and open adoption program en Español.
An Alternative to State Adoption. Brochure for at-risk parents facing state involvement who would like to explore planning an open adoption.
Origins Therapy. Brochure explaining our counseling program for individuals and families involved in adoption, surrogacy and reproductive technologies.
Adoption Sensitive Language. Flier detailing empowering and disempowering words associated with adoption.
FOR SERVICE PROVIDERS
Last Minute Placement Checklist. Flier for Hospital Social Workers to use when patients are planning an adoption at delivery.
Pregnancy Counseling and Open Adoption. Flier for health care professionals and social service providers with all-options pregancy counseling and adoption facts.
Open Adoption Experiences: Sharene’s Story. Sharene is the birthmother of Finn, Sophia and Joan. Finn was adopted through Open Adoption & Services by Brady and Peter. They later adopted his two sisters from the Oregon state foster care system. So often in adoption the focus is on the moment the baby is placed. Now that her son Finn is four, Sharene, along with Finn’s Dads Peter and Brady, have a more evolved open adoption story to tell. Here’s hers. View video — duration 5:50.
Open Adoption Experiences: Christine’s Story. Open adoptee Christine is a 23-year old engaging and thoughtful young woman, who was adopted through Open Adoption & Family Services when she was three years old. Prior to her placement she lived with her birthparents, who struggled with addiction, and then in a foster home for ten months. Christine deeply appreciates how open, non-judgmental and unconditionally loving her parents Erik and Susan have always been as they guided her and sister Jamie (who was adopted within a year of Christine) through the placement of two more birth siblings in other OA&FS families, the death of their birthmom and the ongoing relationship with their birthfather. View video — duration 5:27.
VIDEOS ON DVD
OA&FS Real Life Stories and Adoptee Voices. This video compilation tracks the experiences of women and couples who’ve accessed our services, plus, young adult adoptees talk about their open adoptions. View individual videos.