Several decades ago, adoption was envisioned as a “happily ever after” ending for children who had come from difficult beginnings; however, research on “special needs” adoptions and on the impact of trauma on child development has underscored the reality that adoption does not erase the impact of early adverse experiences. Rather, considerable healing work is needed to address the consequences of those experiences.

Many Lights leads the Post Adoption Support Coalition and participates in other initiatives to improve supports and services for our adoptive, kinship and guardian families in Washington State.

“The goal is to broaden the understanding of this critical issue by the public, professionals and policymakers — and to promote a commensurate realignment of state and national priorities and resources — so that effective, accessible supports for sustaining and strengthening adoptive families become a routine, ongoing reality. The bottom line is that best practices should entail not only helping to form families, but also enabling them to succeed.” (From “Keeping the Promise”, Donaldson Institute, 2010.)

Contact Helen Lakeru at for more information.