Educating parents about the myths and realities of modern adoption has always been a central component of The Cradle’s mission. Our offerings include courses and webinars on topics such as “Conspicuous Families” and “Identity in Adoption.” Still, we feel the need to do more.
We are expanding our focus to address the complex issues around raising children in today's society. The new initiative is entitled Our Children: An Education and Empowerment Series.
Our Children is a multi-year series of programs and events aimed at educating families about the realities and injustices their children may experience in societal interactions, and providing support to those families.
“Our goal is to give parents the tools they need to communicate with and prepare their children for a society that is far from color blind,” says Nijole Yutkowitz, Vice President of Inclusion and Community Development at The Cradle and a Cradle adoptive parent. “We want to help families successfully navigate these difficult dynamics in positive and productive ways.”
The Cradle and a Cradle family were featured on CBS Chicago evening news, talking about transracial parenting and the Our Children Initiative. October 5, 2016
February 22, 2018: Raising Black Children Across Racial Lines Roundtable
Join us as we hear the experiences and perspectives of both adult adoptees and adoptive parents. We will explore an array of topics, such as race, racism and privilege, and the types of conversations that are taking place in transracial adoptive homes. The adult adoptees on the panel, all of whom are Black or biracial and were adopted by white parents, will talk about their personal experiences growing up and share some of the things they wish their parents had done differently. Our adoptive parent panelists will discuss what factors went into their decisions to adopt across racial lines, and what awareness and sensitivities they’ve gained through parenting Black children.
May 10, 2018: Perspectives on Transracial Adoption Webinar on our Adoption Learning Partners platform.
Perspectives on Transracial Adoption is an honest dialogue about some of the tough realities and complex issues that children adopted transracially may experience and how their parents can guide, support and prepare them for a society that is far from color blind.
Join us for a moderated panel of people who were transracially placed. Our panelists come from varied backgrounds. Some were adopted internationally while others were adopted as infants domestically or through the foster care system. They will reflect back to their childhood as well as comment on their current feelings about being transracially adopted. Learn about the webinar and register here.
January 26, 2017: Color of Education Webinar on our Adoption Learning Partners platform
As parents, we all know how important providing a sound education is to our child. Ideally, a school is a nurturing environment where our children learn from teachers, coaches and classmates and start to imagine their futures. But sometimes things can get in the way of that dream. Societal biases as well as spoken and unspoken prejudices fuel expectations, and our Black children feel the impact.
We have assembled an esteemed panel of educators from various backgrounds and perspectives to explore the topic with us. We will pose to the panelists the concerns we have heard from adoptive families who are raising Black children. Learn about the webinar and register here.
Thursday, April 20, 2017: Raising Black Girls Roundtable
The Cradle will host a roundtable discussion designed to promote an honest and open dialogue about some very real issues that affect Black girls. A panel of distinguished Black women will discuss issues prevalent with Black girls, such as the high rate of suspension and why Black girls are considered disruptive, defiant and sassy. Following the roundtable, there will be a question and answer session and an opportunity to talk one-on-one with our esteemed panelists.
Thursday, May 18, 2017: Raising Black Girls Webinar on our Adoption Learning Partners platform
Join us for a moderated panel of African American women. Our panelists come from varied backgrounds. Some were transracially placed as young children. All are distinguished professionals in their respective fields. They will reflect back to their childhood as well as their current role as mothers of Black girls. They will share openly and honestly about the types of discussions that are taking place in their own homes, as well as the everyday fears they have about their daughters’ safety and how they are raising them to become strong Black women. Learn about the webinar and register here.
Thursday, February 18, 2016: Raising Black Boys Roundtable
A panel of distinguished African American men met to discuss the challenges they face being Black men and fathers in today’s society, and the types of conversations families must have with their Black sons. Derrick Young of CBS 2 Morning News moderated.
Recap of the event here. and here
Thursday, May 5, 2016: Raising Black Boys Webinar on our Adoption Learning Partners site
The webinar will continue the conversation we began on the topic of Raising Black Boys with an added piece to help guide transracial families of Black boys in having conversations through the years. Learn about the webinar, meet the experts, and register here.
Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016: Color of Education Roundtable
A discussion about the role race plays in classrooms. Educators of various races will talk about the achievement gap between Blacks and Whites and address topics including understanding children from a cultural perspective, preparing educators and deficit thinking. They will also address: the disparities in discipline and course offerings for children of color; why public schools are still segregated (separate and unequal) in the U.S.; educational expectations and why they are lower for Black children; and the rise of homeschooling among Black families.